Sean Williams South Yorkshire, United Kingdom
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I am a painter based at Bloc Studios in Sheffield. My paintings are made in an adapted pointillist style using acrylic on board. The majority of my subjects lie on the periphery of suburbia – sheds, unusual constructions and isolated buildings under repair – these interest me because they could stand as metaphors for the process of constructing the painting itself.

The locations portrayed in my paintings represent the in-between spaces of everyday life. Factual and symbolic, the subject matter often relates to states of being and feeling that can be as unfixed, open to question and awaiting definition as any geographical locale featured. Britain’s suburban environment functions as a catalyst when exploring a range of metaphorical and literal interpretations, in relation to ideas connected to the home and the unnoticed facets of life in the 21st Century. This is contemporary painting that reflects on the modern condition, armed with ideas of social realism and melancholia. My paintings mimic the medium of photography until the marks of the brush are revealed upon closer inspection. This discovery of intense labour shifts the viewer's focus from the subject matter depicted to the medium itself. In this respect, the work is as much a comment about the production of art as it is a reflection of contemporary urbanity. “Sean’s paintings set up a narrative, without telling it. The emotional resonance is there, the absence of people, the stillness. The way that Sean uses the paint, the long slow build up of colour slow down the looking process. This is about how light falls—and maybe about how these moments of sunlight are what can keep us going, amidst the complexities of the world around us. The profound coalesces alongside the mundane. It’s impossible to be sentimental about such a scene. Here, the landscape is a place to dump unwanted furniture, to move through. It is not a place to dwell a while.” – Dr Alison J. Carr

Artwork

Historical Rubble, Contemporary Goat

Medium: Acrylic on board

My intention was to present an image on the edge of metaphor, that looked as though its true meaning might be something other than the rural poetry of a goat and some colourful rubble, yet remains fairly normal. It is not a scene you would encounter every day but you would not bat an eyelid if you did. The goat looks at and engages us. Were it human we might say it bore a wistful look, and it is this anthropomorphism with which I was keen to experiment. A human figure in a painting can prevent a viewer from fully imagining themselves in the scene. I wondered if a goat may not be such an obstacle.

Details

Almost All We Need to Know

Medium: Acrylic on board

I am keen to document contemporary life. This is a relatively familiar view, and one that I felt contained elements which, in conjunction, could make an interesting painting. The hoarding provides a scene within a scene, beckoning the viewer in to inspect the dream homes on show with eye-catching, high colour graphics, only to be thwarted by the discovery of the illusion and the flourishing foliage in the foreground. The swirling blue design on the hoarding allowed me to introduce a small amount of pattern into the painting, the slick, laminated surface contrasting with the sprawling weeds. The top half of the painting is a similar contrast in textures between the rusting metal of the container and the leaves of the copper beech. By painting it I have made permanent a temporary vista, a snapshot in the life of a place. The houses are built and inhabited now, the hoarding and container long gone.

Details

Lies About Nothing

Medium: Acrylic on board
Details

Celebrate These Good Times

Medium: Acrylic on board

Highly colourful and a joyful celebration of summer. The candy-striped canopy invites revelers to dance and make merry, and the cherry tree has never looked in ruder health, its rich hues competing with the canopy for attention. Is it me or is something amiss? Surely everything is not this perfect. It seems too quiet, as if the event has been cancelled . It is delicately painted, with a hint of pointillism in a bid to discretely recall Pissarro and all that that entails.

Details
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Media
DrawingPainting
Other keywords
FigurativeLandscape