My most recent painting entitled ‘Entering The Dream’. A visual description of being immersed in my surroundings deep in the forest.
A recall of flickering light through movement, of fast changing seasonal colours, of mood and atmosphere, of sounds and scents and of the euphoric warmth that it brings to me.
The piece is painted in oils mixed with bees wax, otherwise known as ‘cold wax technique’ where I melted the wax and mix with turpentine to make a thick paste when cooled down. This is then mixed in with my oil paints to a consistency that is thick but vibrant in colour giving a mat finish and dries quicker. I surfaced the canvas with pine needles and sand letting it dry before applying the paint and wax, something I do in most of my painting.
This is something I am working on at present.. I find it hard to ‘stop painting’ sometimes..it’s like my conscience is whispering to stop but I can’t. Physically, I feel compelled to work some of my paintings up and up until they are almost smothered.. that is where I ‘go’ when I surround myself with my subject..
August.. The most violet of months out in the open landscape of Ireland. Mountains covered in heather of all shades of violets. It is a magical place to walk, up there in the mountains around this time of year. Those reddened violets and purples, all about to wither into golden browns and yellows and soon to be gone until next year, when the cycle begins again..
In this weeks issue of the Wicklow Voice today. Issue February 24th 2017, ahead of Solace Exhibition next week. A short interview on page 10 with the very talented poet and journalist, Brian Quigley. Have a read further down.
focus on faces – Derval Freeman
Great! Very busy at the moment though.
I have a new solo exhibition coming up, in the Signal Arts
Centre in Bray. There’s so much to organise – getting pictures
framed, thinking about what wall space will be available
in the studio, doing the promotional work, organising the
reception etc. Still, these are good complaints! What kind of paintings will you be exhibiting?
There are a lot of landscapes inspired by the woods and
forests of Wicklow, places like Djouce. I’d describe a lot
of my work as abstract landscape. There will be some
photography on show as well. Often I marry the two arts, and
take photographs when I’m out on walks that can then act as
the start point for a canvas. How long have you been painting, and was it always landscapes? All my life really. I was good at and enjoyed art at school,
and went on to study Fine Art Painting at Limerick School of
Art and Design. I spent some time as artist-in-residence at the
Cill Rialaig artists retreat on the Skellig Isles after college,
and possibly this instilled a love of landscapes. Is there a meaning to the title ‘Solace’ for the new exhibition?
It’s a fitting title. Walking through the forests and woods
of Wicklow, looking for images and inspiration, can seem a
lonely pursuit, but I don’t feel alone. They have a life of their
own, as the seasons progress and the weather changes, and
offer something new to the eye every time you visit. Have you done many exhibitions before?
I’ve contributed to many group exhibitions, including some
in the Signal Arts Centre. I’ve put on solo ones before also,
both in Limerick and Dublin. What do you do away from the photography and painting?
I also light music concerts – for Wicklow band God Is An
Astronaut. It’s another form of being creative, but to light a
show in a way that complements the music being played is
both a challenge to do and rewarding when done!
Derval Freeman’s exhibition ‘Solace’ will run between Febraury 27 and March 12 at Bray’s Signal Arts Centre.