Acclaimed and accomplished, this BP Portrait Award finalist likes to devise unusual compositions and the position of the figure and its relationship to the surrounding space is the inspiration for each painting. “I like to play around with the figure in a space; I like the idea that not all of the figure need be shown, because this encourages the viewer to imagine what is going on beyond the perimeters of the picture”.
In addition to working on canvas Anderson has for this exhibition been using ceramic tiles and metal as a support, painting on aluminium, brass, copper and steel, which she sometimes etches as well as using oil paint. Intriguingly the luminescence of a painting on metal looks different from every angle, the subject coming forward and receding as one moves around it. The metals also affect the mood of the paintings, such as the warm glow of 'Reason' on copper and the overall coolness of ‘Summer dress’ on aluminium.
Common to all paintings is the restricted palette of warm greys and sandy colours, with the intervention of black and white. The skin tones are lovingly portrayed and there is a delicate balance between flesh and clothing. In 'Silver bracelet' Anderson contrasts the off-white clothing and beautifully observed flesh tones with the black background. In 'Looking glass' the white dress is a foil for the amazingly close and delicate range of colours used to portray the arms, neck and head, culminating in a thatch of auburn hair.
Born in 1975 and brought up in Glasgow, where she continues to live and work, Anderson graduated from Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art (Dundee) with a first class honours degree in fine art in 1997. She has exhibited with Flying Colours Gallery since 2001 and also throughout the UK and internationally in New York, Singapore, Florida, Zurich and Toronto. She has received several awards including the HSBC Investment Management Award for artists under 35 at the Royal Society of Portrait Painters and the David Cargill award at the Royal Glasgow Institute. She has been regularly selected for the BP Award and in 2005 exhibited in the main collection of the National Portrait Gallery.