Landscapes and abstracts create an artistic fusion
There was a time when professional artist Sheilagh Head’s name and ‘landscapes’ were synonymous, but for some time now she has also been venturing into the world of abstracts which is why her new solo exhibition is called Fusion.l
“My show has a different angle this time a lot of abstracts of Bermuda roofs, and a lot of Bermudian landscapes,” she says.
Revealing her approach to painting abstracts, Mrs Head says she “does not necessarily start out with any great idea of what she is going to paint”.
“It is a meditative process. It is almost as if the painting is talking to me as it evolves and it does evolve.”
Bermuda reefs have proved a fascination for many artists and photographers, and now Mrs Head joins them but why?
“My feelings about Bermuda reefs is the same as it is about the Bermuda landscape,” she says. “Both are so horribly threatened by what is going on here. I was horrified by the development on the South Shore in Warwick. To take prime seafront land and put that ugly, ugly, ugly development on it what were they thinking?”
Recalling the days when it was common to venture down a narrow, leafy lane and suddenly come upon a spectacular open vista, Mrs Head says she is now hard-pressed to find a landscape which isn’t smothered in concrete.
When she does, because she is so passionate about her adopted home, and Man’s erosion of its natural beauty, including the reefs, she feels duty-bound to capture what remains on canvas.
Indeed, the artist has built up an enviable reputation as a landscape artist, and makes no apology for it. Quite the contrary, in fact.
“I feel very strongly about the landscape, and I totally reject this nonsense that painting it is passé. The landscape is something I am passionate about, and care very strongly about. I feel very honoured to have lived in a place as beautiful as Bermuda for more than 40 years. In fact, I still feel the same sense of privilege I did when I first arrived. When I get up in the morning and go to the South Shore and watch the clouds and their changing shapes I think how incredibly lucky I am.”
As a long-standing professional who trained in both the UK and Italy, and whose work is found in corporate offices and private homes around the world, Mrs Head says she has always loved the creative freedom which art provides.
“The great thing about art is that there are no rules. Whatever you feel about it is absolutely valid. Whatever appeals to you is just fine it is your personal decision, and you must have the courage of your own convictions.”
Of course, as with everything else in life, artists and their work are open to criticism, which Mrs Head says is welcome so long as it is constructive.
“The best one can hope for is educated subjectivity. An artist must learn not to listen to criticism or critics who might have an ulterior motive. The eminent Australian art critic Robert Hughes said, ‘The greater the artist the greater the doubt. Perfect confidence is given to the less talented as a consolation prize.’”
Fusion will open to the public at the Windjammer II Gallery on Friday, November 11 and continue through December 1. Gallery hours are: Monday to Thursday 10am to 5pm, Friday 10am to 7pm, Saturday and Sunday 12pm to 5pm. For further information telephone 295-1783.