In these works Shelagh has created small worlds, which hint at little back-stories. The inclusion of a cup, teapot or candle signifies that someone is using this space – or has used it – and invites the viewer to enjoy the psychological effects of the space as well. There is deliberate distortion of perspective and proportion to imply the dreamy state of mind accessed when reflectively entering another world. They offer the sort of physical and mental place to which we like to escape, from bustle, noise and demands.
They are made on Fabriano paper and use many layers of marks using pencils, charcoal, oil bars and acrylics. In addition small, layered pieces of torn Fabriano paper are collaged to add texture and also to increase the effect of the multi-layered, floating thoughts typical of being in a dreamy state. When lost in pleasant thought there are loose ends, bits not tidied up, illogical ideas: the same effect is portrayed here.
Drawing with pencil, with charcoal – or with oil sticks – or ripped paper: the subject matter of this last year’s work has had its own mind. My aim is to surprise myself, to do something new, something I’m not sure of and not sure is any good at all. Ripping paper into shapes – flowers, trees, grasses, is something I do in private for, perhaps, a card for a friend, but have kept separate from my ‘work’.
Some of the things I find fascinating are
- Dressmaker’s dummies
- Welsh mountains and valleys
- Slate and coal
Some aspects of these are amongst the drawings exhibited.