LONDON.- Lyndsey Ingram
is presenting new work by British artist Suzy Murphy. The exhibition includes all aspects of Murphys recent output oil paintings ranging in scale from monumental to diminutive, unique works on paper, and a selection of small sculptures in bronze and clay.
Trained at St. Martins (graduating in 1982), Murphy has painted her entire life. Her subjects shifting, luminous skies, dark forests and translucent lakes - relate to small, quick sketches made en plein air in the extensive visual diaries she has kept since childhood. Murphy has travelled extensively in the United States and Canada and she transfigures her memories from road trips across the country into spare, haunting images.
Murphy does not, however, regard the vivid scenes as landscapes in the traditional sense, rather she treats her memories of landscape as an evocative self-portrait of her inner experience.
Murphy began making monoprints two years ago when she was drawn to the medium for its spontaneity. In a monoprint the marks can only be made once, unlike in editioned prints, so each work is unique with a painterly, gestural quality
You only get one chance, one print, says Murphy. You cant go back its now or never I love that. Sometimes I do a whole series of the same image, adjusting it. I go into the print studio with an image in mind and draw it directly on the plate it will take about half an hour and then I print it. Often it will be a subject that Ive been painting or thinking about. But sometimes I create something completely unrelated youre always inventing on some level.
For Murphy, monoprints echo the freedom she finds in painting since she is able to work outside of the picture plane defined by the plate mark. The printed image becomes the foundation upon which she builds the final piece, with layers of additional hand-painting in oil.
The exhibition includes a group of small, seductive sculptures, which are being shown here for the first time. We hope that by including such a broad range of mediums, this exhibition will give a complete overview of this exceptional artist and her working practice.
Born in London's East End in 1964 to a teenage mother and raised by Irish grandparents, Suzy Murphy moved to Alberta, Canada aged five. From occupying a small tenement apartment with her large Irish family to emigrating with her mother to the vast open landscapes of North America, the subsequent emotional shift of being alone was the creative catalyst for the tranquillity and magical realism that informs her work.
Suzy Murphys love of North America has remained, and for several years has travelled extensively on road trips from the monumental landscapes of the Rocky Mountains of Western Canada to the sprawling townships and prairies of the Western United States. Her diarised sketches speak of this time and her paintings reflect it. This narrative of her life is the subconscious thread that runs throughout her work and continues to present itself in her paintings.
Suzy Murphy is an alumna of St Martins School of Art, London in 1982. Her work is held in many important public and private collections worldwide.
Suzy Murphy continues to live and work in London, England.