Payne Shurvell – A Lane to the Land
Planning Unit’s latest show invite for PayneShurvell’s exhibition – A Lane to The Land – Hannah Brown.
Working within and against the omnipresent legacy of the English landscape tradition, Hannah Brown prefers to present the less-celebrated generic views such as corners of fields and small clearings. Her work centres on the psychology of the English landscape and how we interact with the natural environment and bring it into the domestic sphere.
It is arguably impossible to view our countryside without consideration of the people and movements that have left their mark on it. Hannah’s view is filtered through the depictions of past radicals and pioneers: Constable’s energetic clouds, Turner’s hazy light, Holman Hunt’s sheep grazing on a cliff, the detailed etchings of Samuel Palmer. It is a slippery subject to work with, considered by some exhausted, finding new territory is a challenge. Working within and against the omnipresent legacy of the English tradition she searches for quiet, potentially unsettling places with a peculiar type of beauty.
The new oil paintings in A Lane to the Land are small sections of the area in mid-Devon she has been exploring for the last few years. As Hannah explains: ‘It is important to me that the places I work with are real places that I have spent time in. There is paradoxical desire to seek the picturesque within the natural environment and then promptly alter it by creating one’s own version. The images I make are carefully mediated; avoiding the nearby infrastructure, they are an idealized falsehood. I empty out the images in order to let the viewer in and I have inadvertently formed a set of rules; all people, roads, wildlife and structures are removed, as are flowers, blue sky and clouds. The scene is captured between the months of May – October when the leaves are on the trees.’
Hannah Brown was born in Salisbury and is now based in London. She is a graduate of the Royal College of Art, London . Her work is included in numerous private and public collections worldwide, including the V&A and the Cleveland Collection.