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Established in Brixton, 2010. In association with Brixton Art Prize & #lofipostershow

Artist Interview Throwback: Jackie Clark

We like to talk to our artists to learn the ins and outs of their process, inspiration and overall outlook on their artistic journey. This week, we’re throwing it back to Jackie Clark.

Describe your artwork in a few sentences

I photograph and document my local landscape and sometimes when I go on trips. I try to take photographs of landscapes that are overlooked or quiet and I explore painting them and show the beauty of the quiet moments. They’re very still paintings. Sometimes it’s through a train or bus window. I sometimes document the journey I take as well.

What is your creative process?

I just paint from the photograph. There’s no specific process. I paint on aluminium, I paint on wood and on panels. I don’t paint on canvas since my work is very fine. It’s concentrated and focused work from the photographs. The process is in how I take the photograph.

What is your art background?

I did a BA in painting and a Masters degree.

By looking at some of your artwork, such as ‘Walking on the beach at night’, there are a lot of dark colours. Do you gravitate towards darker colours and tones?

I used to do a lot of night paintings. I liked the purples and blues that you get in the night, it’s magical. I then decided to go back to daylight paintings. My work is largely about light as well as empty spaces. Different times of the day are interesting to me.

Who are your influences?

There are a few people whom I follow on Instagram who are Russian and Ukrainian photographers. I like the poetry in their work. The way they take the photographs is so poetic and literature oriented and their use of light as well as the way they tell stories. As far as painters, Lee Maelzer from London is an influence on me. I can relate to the way she paints. A few German painters and French impressionism. I like their lightness of touch.

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Favourite series or artwork you’ve created?

It’s probably the same for everybody, it’s my recent work. I’m currently painting the shoreline of the Thames. I’m walking along the Thames and taking photographs at different times of the day

Are any artists catching your attention?

Because of Instagram, that can change day by day. It changes all of the time. It’s fairly disposable. You’ll like their work but then it disappears the next day. I’m really enjoying painting the shoreline of the Thames. It’s a different perspective of London.

How do you come up with names for your work?

I try to keep it really simple. I usually just put the name of where I am. I used to put the time of the day. The impressionists would do that. I did a painting the other day of the water of Isle of Dogs and because my paintings are really quiet and there are spaces people don’t notice, there’s something about that because so much is going on in the world politically and environmentally. There are so many things you can talk about but I don’t talk about it. I just continue doing my quiet landscapes. I name one of my pieces in German along with something of the lines of ‘It appears nothing is happening’ in which everything is happening. It was the first time I actually titled a piece with a serious title.

Have you visited countries or other places that you’ve based your work on?

Yes. I was in Puglia, Italy where I took pictures through a bus window with graffiti on them. I created a series on those. I liked the graffiti. It’s funny. There’s humour in them. I also painted a series of a train journey from Geelong to Melbourne where I am from. I like to document and paint my daily lifestyle in London.

Does taking a break from your work help you?

By working five days a week, it gives me loads of time to think and come back to my work. It’s more of a release for me and I work intensely when I work in a different industry and come back to it. That balance works for me.

What is your proudest achievement with your art?

The Evening Standard created this painting prize. It was the first one they did and it was the landscape of London so I entered it. I got into the finals shortlist. It was really exciting. I was also in an exhibition in Berlin. I’ve exhibited a couple of times in Melbourne too.

What are you working on next?

I just continue developing from where I’m at. I’m doing the Isle of Dogs and Thames landscapes. I just keep going with that. It oftens depends if I’m travelling to work for example. I’ll start looking through a window of a train or bus, finding something interesting. It’s just things in my daily life.

Dominique de Comarmond

Dominique is the Creative Coordinator at Studio 73. She is originally from South Africa and is also a musician and artist known as Diascia. She loves all things art, cats and coffee.

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