It would be fair to say that landscape painter Leigh Glover experiences the outdoors in a unique way to most. Continually fascinated by the visual world, Leigh feels a kind of spatial thrill each time his eyes interpret the colours, textures, light and space of incredible scenery. The process of translating these elements into the language of paint engrosses Leigh long before he picks up a paint brush. To create an image which allows others to experience the same elation is what drives Leigh to spend hours on end, often in undesirable weather conditions, observing and interpreting his environment.
But what is it that ignites other artists to take up a similar mantle? In Throw Those Curtains Wide Leigh explores the diversity of approaches to landscape painting by bringing together the work of ten of his contemporaries. The invitation to viewers, as suggested by the exhibition title, is to experience multiple times over a window onto a new world.
Straying no further than a couple of miles radius from her home, Olha Pryymak takes an en plein air approach to London's urban scenery, inevitably sharing her slice of the view with fellow Londoners and the odd dog. At the other end of the extreme, Craig Askew's Cornish coastal scenes are doused in weather, tempting viewers to take in a bracing breath of sea air.
For Olivier Tafforin, throwing the curtains wide means opening a window not onto the outside world, but onto landscapes belonging to memory and the imagination. Little Window is suggestive of a cinematic scene where an unknown event has either just been, or is about to be, staged. Mysterious and intriguing, Olivier simultaneously uses landscape both as scene and subject.
By likening the picture frame to the window frame, Throw Those Curtains Wide provides a welcome invitation to explore paintings as you might a scene from an open window. When you take your time to watch, or stare even, what is it that you see?