1 – 21 November | Private View: 2 November
Gallery in the Lanes is proud to announce their upcoming exhibition Lisa Almond: Contemporary Landscape Paintings. This free exhibition will include a collection of new and previous works by the Norwich-based artist. Lisa Almond’s artworks are meditative while powerful. They convey a sense of peace while travelling to great depths. Each painting is intended to allow the viewer to see something in it for themselves but to feel at ease while doing so. Lisa will be exhibiting mixed media abstract paintings in her first solo show with Gallery in the Lanes. Gallery Manager, Ian Sayer says:
‘Lisa’s work is loved by our customers. I think its popularity lies in its still, contemplative depth, beautiful compositions and carefully considered colour palettes. I’m delighted to be able to showcase Lisa’s talent in her first solo show with us.’
Artist in Conversation: Lisa Almond
How long have you been painting?
I have been painting for around 14 years. I begun training as an ceramicist but I didn’t take to it. A few years later I was living in the States and I wanted to create something to hang on my walls. That was when I started painting and I haven’t stopped.
It’s interesting you mentioning ceramics because your work has a tactility to it. Do you think this has stemmed from this period?
There is a hangover from ceramics somewhere. I do like a bit of texture. I like the idea of putting different layers of texture onto a painting and then taking it off again.
When did you notice the change in your mindset to think of painting as a profession?
When I was artist in residence in Glenfiddich, Scotland. I was surrounded by many successful artists. They were from all over the world and everybody had so many brilliant ideas and different approaches to working. It was completely mind-blowing and taught me a lot. After this experience I decided that I need to take painting seriously or forget about it.
When you begin a new painting, how do you start?
Usually, I have four or five on the go at the same time. They begin quite complicated and then as they progress I try to simplify them. But Payne’s Grey will always be the first colour on the canvas. A lot relates to how I’m feeling. Each canvas is a subconscious journey that depends on my mood and the music I am listening to at the time. Planning them doesn’t work for me.
How does it differ when you are doing a commission for someone?
Commissions are tough because you must create from their ideas. I used to do two paintings and let them choose. This took the pressure off everybody, but I can’t do that now because I’m too busy. I think if you’re struggling with a commission you’ve got to get to the point where you paint for yourself. You’ve got to take the client off the table almost and just hope they like it.
What is one of your earliest memories of being creative?
Probably drawing with my Dad when I was six years old. Both my parents are artists. My Dad is an excellent drawer and worked in the film industry. I’ve always been surrounded by creativity. He would arrange objects into a still life for us to draw. It did make me hate drawing for a while. My Dad has discipline for drawing where I don’t.
Have your parent’s arts backgrounds inspired your decision to pursue painting?
Yes, art has always been there. If it wasn’t art, it was film or music. My parents never called themselves artists though, they never played into that. They always refused to talk about their work, they would just paint. Both are very good painters.
What does painting mean to you?
It’s something I just need to do, it feels essential. When I paint I am going on a journey with each canvas. It doesn’t feel like I’m consciously doing anything other than making that piece of work feel right. I equate it to going for a walk where you’ve never been before.
You spoke earlier about the influence music has while you’re painting. Is there a musician or genre that inspires you the most?
Everything, from Punk to Ska to Classical, to terrible House music. There is always music, I can’t paint in silence. But I always finish a painting with Phillip Glass. His compositions are clean and simple. He creates crisp and beautiful music. I just think he’s amazing. He helps me to finish off a painting in my head and it has become a ritual listening to him as I’m coming to the end of a piece.
Other than Phillip Glass playing, how do you know when a piece is finished?
When I look at it and I don’t see anything that needs changing. I must be a little bit in love with it before it goes anywhere.
How has nature informed your work, and at which point did you decide to begin painting landscapes?
I was living in Colorado and I was very unhappy. I had two small children and my only escape was walking in the mountains, pushing around a big buggy. When I was on those walks I felt alright. Being in the environment, the big skies and the rocky mountains became a reminder that there are nice times and I can get through the difficult bits.
If someone was to come across your work for the first time. In a nutshell, how would you describe your work to them?
One of the artists from the residency said my paintings have all the elements in them. I want my paintings to be meditative while powerful. To convey a sense of peace, to be about nothing but with a huge amount going on. Each painting is intended to allow the viewer to see something in it for themselves but while doing so feel quite peaceful.
The exhibition opens 1 November and runs for three weeks, with the private view Friday 2 November, 5:00 -7:00 pm. If you would like to attend the private view or would like further information, email email@example.com or fill in the contact form below. Gallery in the Lanes showcases a diverse collection of paintings and visitors will have the opportunity to see these alongside the exhibition itself.