Artist of the week: Julia Ann Field

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This week the Brighton Journal spoke to Julia Ann Field, a local artist who encompasses themes of ‘The Feminine, The Divine and our blessed Earth’ in her work. She beautifully paints the local landscapes that we all love and recognise.

All images in this article
© The Artist

Julia creates figurative paintings that invite the viewer to study “take a moment out of our frenetically-paced skewed life, to reflect on ancient themes.”

If you go down to the Woods in May

When interviewed, Julia had been “signing off a couple of little mixed media pieces for Pier Road Coffee and Art in Littlehampton, taking photos for marketing on social media, ordering Fine Art prints and buying frames for that day’s sales, and completing and posting my entry form for the Brighton & Hove Arts Council Annual Exhibition.” Julia also works a ‘proper job’ to pay the bills!

Private View – The Gallery at Monague

Julia creates most of our artwork in her ‘little studio flat’: “It has good light, a big garden which backs onto a nature reserve, and inspirational views of the Downs. Consequently, I can work from home, both inside and outdoors – if the weather is permitting! The advantage is being able to step out of bed and get straight down to painting, though there are obvious disadvantages to not having a separate living space.”

What are you working on at the moment?

“I am working on various pieces. I’m putting the finishing touches to an oil painting about plastic pollution, which is called ‘Choke’, and I have recently completed an acrylic commission on canvas entitled ‘Dancing at Sunset’, which now needs to be varnished and taken to Frame of Mind in Blatchington Road.  I’m also trying to produce lots of small affordable paintings in watercolour, for a number of upcoming ventures. Besides which, I’m itching to get out on my first plein air jolly of the year: those magnificent Preston Park magnolias in full bloom are beckoning to me.”

Aiming for the Pier

What are the key themes in your work?

“The key themes in my ‘SacredScapes’ and ‘SacredSites’ are the Feminine, the Divine and our Earth. In artworks, such as ‘Tipping Point’ and ‘Choke’, the theme of plastic pollution also rears its ugly head. Other genres I work with tend to be purely representational: plein air paintings, life drawing, and the new sunset silhouette series.”

 ‘Nightfall in the Cuckmere Valley’.

What attracts you to working with paint?

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“I love the exciting immediacy of watercolour, its jewel-like colours, and even its terrifying unpredictability and unforgiving nature. The luxurious consistency and malleability of oils seduce me. Finally, Atelier Interactive Acrylics facilitate my outdoor work: unlike more traditional acrylics, I can keep working into them, even on a sunny windy day. They also dry fast enough for me to easily get my painting home without smudging it.”

The Bird Cage II

How has your art been affected by living in Brighton?

“There is so much visual inspiration to draw on. The Sussex countryside, the sea, the sunsets and sunrises, the city’s architecture and landmarks all affect my art. Plus there is certainly no shortage of intellectual stimulation or of artistic opportunities in the city.”

Julia’s favourite local space to experience art is The Sussex County Arts Club when it has its Brighton Festival Open House, “for its inspirational floor to ceiling display of life drawing and sculpture by professional and amateur artists alike. I also adore trips up to the Royal Academy for its astonishing Summer Exhibition and for the numerous other extraordinary exhibitions I’ve enjoyed there over the years.”

If she could own one piece of art it would be: “My Muse, the 11.1 cm high Paleolithic figurine, known as the Venus of Willendorf. She embodies, in essence, all three dominant themes in my SacedScapes, and I covet Her!”

Julia won the David Rose annual prize

Julia thinks that in general, women artists are underrated, and suggested that we check out Leonora Carrington.

The link to Julia’s website is available here

You can check her out on Instagram: JuliaAnnFieldArtist

Or contact her on Facebook: JuliaAnnFieldArt

Check out last weeks ‘Artist of the Week’ here


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