Judy Millar

Clouds and Fire and Water and Air

4 August – 28 August 2021

It Was Both Light and Dark, They Say 2021 acrylic and oil on canvas 210x160cm
Flare 2021 acrylic and oil on canvas 210x160cm
Hard Epic 2021 acrylic and oil on canvas 210x150cm

The works for this exhibition were, for the most part, painted during the year 2020. A period that will be forever bracketed in our hearts and minds as the year of the pandemic.  A time when the world went eerily quiet. A time when we were forced to find new relationships with our immediate surroundings.

I spent the year in my isolated home and studio on Auckland’s West Coast. Time slowed. My own focus was on the simplest of things. The movement of clouds. Making fire to stay warm. The light on the water outside my window. Wind and air.

Painting for me is always an attempt to grasp hold of something. As I took the colours of fire, mixed paint to the fluidity of water, produced clouds of coloured spray and attempted to aerate the surface of the canvas into an open space; the solidity of things moved in and out of focus. Forms emerged on the canvas but had a fleeting feeling, as if they were about to dissipate or perhaps hadn’t yet fully formed. Red moved to pink and then back to red. Everything seemed to be in motion. The resulting paintings together form a group where movements continue from one to another, read in this way they become a form of moving landscape. Individually they are snapshots of a particular time and place.