about…

I’m an abstract mixed media artist with a particular passion for liminal landscapes such as coastline, salt marsh and moorland. I’m fortunate to have lived in some of the most beautiful areas in the UK: from the Lancashire Pennines to the Isle of Skye and, currently, North Norfolk; and I love painting in others such as Cornwall, Dungeness and the North York Moors.

My eye is constantly drawn to the light and colour in the world around me. Responding to these impressions is what powers my work. This is reflected in the way I build up my pieces, layering and wiping back media, exposing underlying passages and employing lively markmaking, resulting in a rich surface history. I prefer to work in acrylics, which allow me to build up a layered surface relatively quickly; they also work well with other media such as ink, collage, oil pastel, graphite etc. Elements observed while sketching on location are combined with my intuition and experience of the subject, which, back in the studio, results in work that stands alone but still owes a debt to the landscape and my response to it. 

I’m originally from Manchester and studied Art and Design as a mature student, followed by a 20 year career in graphic design, which eventually took me to the Isle of Skye, where I began to develop my abstract landscape work. I eventually moved to Norfolk to concentrate on my main passion, painting. I now work as a full-time artist from my studio on a 1930s RAF airbase. My design background can sometimes be felt in my work through confident colour combinations, strong composition and use of typography.

I have exhibited widely throughout the UK in both group and solo shows. My work has been regularly selected for the Royal Institute of Painters in Water Colours (RI) at the Mall Galleries, London; I’ve exhibited with the Royal Watercolour Society at Bankside Gallery, London; been a finalist in the Sunday Times Watercolour Competition 2014, and a finalist in Artist & Illustrator Magazine Artist of the Year 2016. My work is held in private collections around the world.

SELECTED EXHIBITING HISTORY:

Royal Institute of Painters in Water Colours, Mall Galleries, 2016-2021.
Royal Watercolour Society ‘Contemporary Watercolours’, Bankside Gallery, 2018, 2019.
Gallery East, Woodbridge, Suffolk, duo & group exhibitions, 2019-2021.
Little Buckland Gallery, Broadway, Cotswolds, group exhibitions, 2021-2022.
Babylon Arts, Ely, Cambridgeshire, group exhibition, ‘No Frost at Night’, 2021.
Grapevine Contemporary, Burnham Market, Norfolk, solo & group exhibitions, 2009-2019.
Gallery Different, London, group exhibition (with Sheridan Russell), 2018.
Sheridan Russell Gallery, London, art fairs, 2014-2017.
Cricket Fine Art, Summer exhibition, Chelsea, London, 2017.
Black Barn, Cockley Cley, Norfolk, group exhibitions, 2017, 2021.
Thompsons Gallery, Aldeburgh, Suffolk, mixed exhibitions, 2013-2017.
Artichoke Gallery, East Sussex, ‘Across the water’, group exhibition, 2017.
Artists & Illustrators Artist of the Year, Finalist, Mall Galleries, 2016.
Cley Contemporary 16, North Norfolk Exhibition Project, 2016.
The Sutton Gallery, Edinburgh, mixed exhibition, 2015.
Sunday Times Watercolour Exhibition, Finalist, Mall Galleries, 2014.
Highgate Contemporary, London, ‘Inside Out’, duo exhibition, 2012.
Greyfriars Art Space, King’s Lynn, solo exhibitions, 2012-2014.
Inchmore Gallery, Inverness, solo & group exhibitions, 2006, 2007.
An Tuireann Art Gallery, Isle of Skye, group exhibition, 2005, 2006.

SELECTED PRESS & PUBLICATIONS:

EAVA zine ‘Pilgrimages’, @eavazine, June 2021
Artists and Illustrators magazine, Fresh Paint feature, September 2020
‘The Woven Tale Press’ Literature & Fine Art Magazine, featured artist, October, 2019
‘Painting clouds and skies in oils’, guest artist, Mo Teeuw, Crowood Press 2017
The Artist Magazine, featured artist, July 2016
‘Blyth Spirit’, Alan Marshall, Mascot Media 2014
KL magazine, featured artist, 2014.
‘How artists see East Anglian Places’, Green Pebble 2010

12 thoughts on “about…

  1. I enjoy looking at your work, Mari, particularly your abstractions of the Norfolk saltmarshes, which I used to visit regularly. Do you have any plans to publish your work as a book?

    • Hi Glenis, I’m so pleased you enjoy my work and that you can relate to the saltmarsh works. I’ve actually been in discussions with someone who works in publishing and is interested in out producing a series of small books (‘Zines) on my work. Each would be on a theme and I feel Saltmarshes will be one of them. I’m excited about the project but as we’re both very busy this spring it may be a little while before it gets underway. If you subscribe to my studio newsletter or follow my social media you’ll be kept up-to-date on proceedings. Thanks for your interest.

    • I have Nigel, and no it’s not a daft question 😉
      my life as a serious artist took off when I lived on Skye, so much inspiration, you can imagine!
      the move to Norfolk was challenging from the inspiration side of things. though we both love living here, it’s taken a couple of years to find my new passion – the saltmarsh coast; it has a bleak beauty and grandeur all of its own. Norfolk is also well placed for exploring other areas of UK and Europe, so I can see upcoming bodies of work inspired by the North York Moors and Venice.

      • Hello Mari…

        Thanks I knew you had lots of new work from your wonderful paintings on this blog but its that exact transition I was wondering about.

        When I moved to Ireland I had to change a lot of my own visual interests and this took time like yourself. I love your Salt march images Mari and I can see how you can and will dig very deep into these areas as a source for your work.

        I am just starting to look at the peat bogs as I love the work of this artist http://www.pastelsocietyofireland.org/#/sam-mateer/4568792497

        I may even get painting and drawing again!

        Thank you Mari

        Nigel

        • I can imagine the peat bogs of Ireland would be an interesting source of inspiration, Neil. Those pastel images remind me very much of parts of Skye and the Uists. My mum was from Northern Ireland, though her family originated in Co Clare, so you never know, I may end up painting over there one day 🙂
          Thanks for the interesting feedback and chat!

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