Annie Coxey | Watermarks | 1 Mar to 22 April 2017
An exhibition of abstract paintings inspired by the floods and the changes to the landscape.
The feeling of shock and disbelief walking down by the river after the floods and seeing the debris left high in branches and the mixture of roots, large pieces of fencing, furniture and metal that ended up tangled in trees. Areas of riverbank which just disappeared overnight and trees that were ripped out of the ground. Even now, the grooves in the grass where tree trunks were dragged along are still visible and the new pebble beach is a lasting reminder of the floods.
The floods caused so much trauma to the people of Cumbria and even those not directly affected, were shocked by the impact on the people and the landscape around them. The weeks and months after the flood Annie documented her dog walks with sketches and photos of the aftermath; the debris in the trees, the uprooted trees and the river bank destruction - over time these developed into paintings.
The paintings are inspired by her experiences, sketches and photographs and involved an eclectic use of mixed media. Using acrylic paint and inks, Annie is never sure what the images will be when she starts - they evolve and become a conversation between herself and the painting. She has used materials from the floods, placed on the canvas in the wet inks and paint to produce some interesting marks to work with. Annie also uses sewing patterns in her paintings, the arrows and symbols remind her of symbols and contours on maps and she also found that the measurements reminded her of flood height recordings. Many of the paintings have layers of mark-making and Annie enjoys rediscovering marks hidden underneath paint. She also uses resin in some of her paintings which 'captures' a part of the painting and holds it while she works around it. Despite the subject matter, there is a surprising beauty to the paintings, some reflecting the aerial views of the river from a drone, others of the riverbanks, debris and trees.
Venue: Sugar Store Gallery