AboutGeorge Rowlett is celebrated for his landscapes of East Kent and the riverscapes of London: the two places where he has spent the best part of the last twenty years living and working. No less crucial, though more rarely seen, are his flower and garden paintings to which this exhibition is devoted.
Outside of his studio in Walmer is a small and deliberately overgrown garden which, for the same twenty years, has also been an important source of stimulation. It is a garden taken over by carefully nurtured seeds and cuttings that he avidly collects, multiplies and divides that has become an alternative source of study and inspiration to the downlands of Kent and riverside sites in London. Here he records these microcosms of constantly changing light and colour, growth and decay with the same vigour as an energetic landscapist rather than the placid admiration of a botanical artist.
The paintings divide into two types - the flower pictures which are made in the studio and the true garden paintings made on the spot in front of living bloom and foliage. They are paintings that hover between interior and exterior space, still-life and landscape but with the same distinctive combination of broad gesture and telling detail that characterises all of Rowlett's work. And whichever strand of his art one seeks to analyse one thing in common: a belief in the primacy of things in the world founded on Kipling's belief that âthe Glory of the Garden lies in more than meets the eye'.
George Rowlett trained at Camberwell (1962-65) and the Academy Schools (1965-68) and has work in private and public collections in Germany, South Africa, the U.S.A and the UK.
An 18 page catalogue with 14 colour plates and a short introduction by Andrew Lambirth accompanies the exhibition and can be viewed on line .