These works tell simple stories through short series of images.
Batik is a wax resist technique where layers of wax and ink are build up to form an image, working from light to dark. The wax is applied over the ink and protects the colour beneath it. Darker washes of ink are added, each protected by the applied wax to create a final image. Due to the nature and application of the wax it is hard to work precisely and images are often free flowing and abstracted by the spatters of wax.
Clare Hobbs explores the idea of seeing and being seen. Her bold but intimate portraits invite the viewer to engage with the subject, whilst creating a narrative around the person. Her paintings appear realistic, however closer inspection reveals abstract contours and contrasting tones. Her work as an art psychotherapist, and the academic theory behind the practice, informs and influences her own art: looking at themes of 'holding' and 'mirroring' – understanding and being understood. These ideas are translated in her work in acrylic and batik - a wax resist technique which uses multiple layers of ink and wax.
Clare explores the process of creation. This can be seen in her 'un-sighted' drawings. In these the artist looks only at the subject, while the hand, blinkered from the eyes, translates seeing into mark making. Through this sacrifice of control, an unrefined statement of the act of looking is formed. The resulting interpretation is more an emotional response to the subject than a visual record, and invites the viewer to mirror the artist's way of looking. Working predominantly in pen, making instant and permanent lines, these works are notable for their rawness and honesty. This can be highlighted with the application of watercolour, which adds coherence to the subject, or left as an abstracted series of marks. Her subjects include the people around her, everyday objects and the natural world.
Showing at Unit 13 during the first two weekends of July.
Unit 13, Barnwell Business Park,
Barnwell Drive, Cambridge CB5 8UZ