Paradise, New Paintings by Audrey Grant at Panter and Hall, Pall Mall, London until 25th September 2020

September 7, 2020

Paradise brings together notions of Arcadia and Desire (Eros the god of love or Eros the Bittersweet). It explores the longing for that which we seek but can never truly find. It is this longing, this desire, that interests me and which motivates our searching in life and in the creative act.
Audrey Grant July 2020

In this latest exhibition Audrey remains in the realms of German literature and the nineteenth century interpretation of classical mythology. Her style has progressed, as far as possible within the medium, to an even purer form of conceptual expressionism. The path from semi-abstract figurative paint- ings to this magnificent series of large scale canvases has been fascinating to watch.
In many places Audrey seems to lose herself in the canvas, abandoning representation to the joy of full expressionism and the physical pleasure of thick paint. The result is a body of work unlike anything we have exhibi- ted here before, a visceral collection both emotionally and visually, but most of all a very human one.
Matthew Hall August 2020

Link to Gallery website here

Morgenthau Plan for Creative Renewal – RSA Residency with Cromarty Arts Trust, March-April 2020

May 4, 2020

Written for the Cromarty Arts Trust Spring newsletter:

During my time in Cromarty I have been researching material for my project ‘Morgenthau Plan for Creative Renewal’. This is a major new project which will explore real and imagined landscapes – as a metaphor for personal and collective renewal. Cromarty even in lockdown has provided a rich and varied source of material to feed into my work, from the monumental sculptural oil rig platforms in the Firth to the mesmerising Gaelic Chapel and the ever changing light which is just breathtaking. I have explored these as subjects to investigated through a variety of mediums including works on paper, photography both digital and polaroids and short iphone videos. As well as a long-durational drawing/painting measuring 50cm by 10 metres which is a sort of stream of consciousness for my ideas. On returning to my studio in Edinburgh (whenever it re-opens!) I will try to bring all the threads together to create a major new body of work over the next two years. 

Images from the Residency can be viewed on Instagram – audreygrant_artist

The Herald Review – Portraiture as a two- way process

June 15, 2019

A new exhibition highlights opposite views of the artistic tradition
THERE is a long and venerable – if controversial – history of erasure in art. From Renaissance masters rubbing at oils to remove and reapply, to art restorers scraping away “superfluous” layers of paint; from Robert Rauschenberg, who used 40 rubbers to erase a de Kooning drawing in Erased de Kooning in the 1950s to Jonathan Owen’s contemporary Eraser Drawings, artists have long experimented with taking something away to produce something new. The permutations are complex, from simple necessity to a rejection of the past, from the rebuttal of received learning and inheritance to the idea that we can only create something new by studying then rubbing away the old. What is left, if we take everything else away.

In portraiture this is no less relevant. Artist Audrey Grant uses erasure as a key part of her process in working towards a portrait, as shown in this fascinating new exhibition at the Scottish National Portrait Gallery.

continue reading here

RSA Residency for Scotland 2019 Award

April 18, 2019

The RSA (Royal Scottish Academy) Residency for Scotland panel have awarded Audrey Grant a bursary of £4000 to undertake a residency in 2020 at Cromarty Arts Trust on the Black Isle.    To undertake research into a major new painting project – Morgenthau Plan for Creative Renewal – an exploration of real and imagined landscapes, and a metaphor for personal creative renewal.

Click here for more details

The Long Look: Audrey Grant and Norman McBeath at The Scottish National Portrait Gallery

December 7, 2018

25 May – 27 October 2019
Scottish National Portrait Gallery
1 Queen Street, Edinburgh EH2 1JD 0131 624 6200 | Admission FREE #NGSLongLook

The Long Look explores a unique creative exchange between two artists. The painter Audrey Grant and photographer and printmaker Norman McBeath developed an unconventional ‘artist and sitter’ relationship when Grant asked McBeath to sit for a portrait in charcoal. At the end of each sitting, Grant asked McBeath to photograph the drawing she had made that day. She would then erase her drawing at the start of the next sitting and begin the portrait anew. Intrigued by Grant’s working methods, McBeath began to photograph aspects of this process, such as the sitter’s chair, Grant’s hands, and the charcoal she used. Grant completed the portrait after two years of sittings and, in tandem, worked on a separate portrait of McBeath, as well as two long- durational portraits of the award-winning crime writer Val McDermid. The four finished portraits, along with images of all the versions of the drawings that no longer exist, and McBeath’s own photographs, will be on display in this fascinating and revelatory exhibition. Click here for more information.

Audrey Grant at Panter and Hall, An Exploration of the Human and Elemental, Review by ARTLYST

September 15, 2018

Audrey Grant’s latest exhibition of paintings is drawn from Des Meeres der Liebe Wellen* (The Waves of Sea and Love) a piece by the 19th Century Austrian dramatist Franz Grillparzer.

Audrey allows the oil paint to do the work of the narrative. She creates a strong visual vocabulary and builds churning layers of light and depth. In these six paintings, the sea and tides become a metaphor for fluid emotion and the unforgiving power of nature.

They are a striking example of the artist’s exploration of both the human and elemental.
…Audrey’s exploration into literature complements the execution of her latest painting. Excerpts from the text are torturously spelt out on some of the surfaces, almost an homage to self-harming. The story of Hero and Leander provides a fertile and unfettered scope for all forms of technical experimentation.
Contiguous, there is a series of eight nudes ‘Le Figure a Nu.’ Each of these canvases is packed with an energetic force, almost metaphysical and lyrical in nature.

There is also a series of ten small conceptual oils called ‘Woman.’ These are primitive and explicit in their physical frankness and unashamed vigour. Combine this with Audrey’s tumultuous handling of paint and they rapidly transform into tiny radical expressionist effigies.

There is a strong sense from these most recent works that Audrey Grant is continually tearing down boundaries and taboos. She’s defining her own aesthetic by critical reflection, experimentation and progressive development…

To read Lisa Azarami’s full review for ARTLYST click here

Des Meeres und der Liebe Wellen – Panter and Hall, London, 12 – 28 September 2018

August 28, 2018

The inspiration and starting point for this new body of paintings is Des Meeres und der Liebe Wellen (The Waves of Sea and Love) by the Austrian dramatist Franz Grillparzer (1791-1872). This is a re-telling of the classical myth of Hero, the Greek priestess of Aphrodite at Sestos, who was seen at a festival by Leander of Abydos. They fell in love and he swam the Hellespont at night to visit her, guided by a light from her tower. One stormy night the light was extinguished and Leander was drowned; Hero, seeing his body, drowned herself.

This new exhibition has at its heart an allegorical painting in six parts: two large scale sea paintings – Des Meeres und der Liebe Wellen part I and Des Meeres und der Liebe Wellen part II; two large scale seated female figures – My nature yields, and yielding finds itself part III and You swam here, from Abydus distant shore part IV; and two medium sea paintings – Leander, Leander part V and Liebe, Liebe part VI.

To read more including Professor Mary Modeen’s essay and view the whole collection click here to view the e-catalogue

Audrey Grant presented with W Gordon Smith Award 2018

February 1, 2018

Audrey Grant’s painting Nu I (seated) has received one of the inaugural W Gordon Smith Awards of £2,000, presented by Society of Scottish Artists and Visual Arts Scotland at their annual exhibition OPEN 2018 at the RSA Edinburgh. 

Ceci est mon corps – London exhibition – 10th – 27th October 2017

July 7, 2017

A selection of the Ceci est mon corps paintings recently exhibited in Edinburgh plus 2 new paintings will now be shown at Panter and Hall, Pall Mall, London between 10th – 27th October 2017. 

These paintings arise from the artist’s collaboration with Scottish Ballet in rehearsal at their studios in Tramway, Glasgow.  The exhibition in Edinburgh was selected as ‘Critic’s Choice’ in The Scotsman by Duncan MacMillan in May 2017

View the Ceci set mon corps E-Catalogue here