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Stephen Prince

Paintings on a Theme ...

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CATALUNYA

 

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All paintings oil on canvas (2013, 2014 and 2015) prices on request

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8 CORNISH PAINTERS
@ Eton College, November 2011

(Anthony Frost, Bob Devereux, Stephen Prince, Carole McDowell,
Colin Freebury, Paul Wadsworth, Russell Hedges, Bob Bourne)

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"Moving Out" (2011)
oil on canvas 77 x 102 cm £800.00

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"This is the place fastened still with movement" (<WS Graham>)
oil on canvas (2011) 64 x 79cm £550.00

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"I raise up loving and you may not move" (< WSG >)
oil on canvas (2011) 49 x 63cm £480.00

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"Now the chuck of daws
And the listening sea" (< WSG >)
oil on canvas (2011) 26 x 33cm £320.00

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"Stand by me here" (< WSG >)
oil on canvas (2011) 26 x 33cm £320.00

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"Incidental" (2009)
oil on canvas 33 x 33cm £375.00

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"Manifest" (2009/10)
oil on canvas 100 x 136 cm £1150.00

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about West Penwith

'Coastal 2' (2007) oil on canvas 30 x 30" (76 x 76cm) Sold

A sense of looking down has been a theme underlying much of my painting of late and comes from the experience of reacquainting myself with the West Penwith coast path between Lands End and Zennor, particularly at Botallack and Pendeen. Here the intrinsic 'scene' is a looking down, whether at the rushing sea, into deeply cut 'zawns', at pathways which twist and turn amongst the stony outcrops, or at the gulls above the waves and kestrels and peregrines sweeping into the cliff faces to find a perch above the crashing waters. At the same time pertinent challenges fostered by the wish to apply forms in an 'abstract' manner have found their own configuration, their own active 'scene', their own dynamism.

The Crown Mines at Botallack

: Burnet moths along the coast path peregrine on the cliffs at Rosemergy


 

'Cuckoo Walk' (2007) oil on canvas 24 x 24" (60 x 60cm) £595

This small canvas succeeded where a number fail in that it seemed to evolve towards its own conclusion, one that satisfyingly took me a little by surprise. It therefore has a conviction about it that has a suggestion of 'place' as well as what David Whittaker termed "an echo of the old school". I had been walking in the area of Chun Castle and visited the Men-an-tol and nearby standing stones and I think there is a sense of 'stony place' here and of walking across and between enveloping land. At Chun I watched meadow pipits mobbing a cuckoo and near to the Men-an-tol I watched another cuckoo idling in a solitary hawthorn tree. The 'cleft' or v-shape I hope suggests that space between hills or between cliffs where the land goes down to the sea as a valley. This has in itself prompted a number of paintings including 'Space Between' exhibited at the Great Atlantic 'Map Works' Gallery.

the Men-an-tol & Chun Quoit


 

'Dark Monarch' (2009) oil on canvas (sold)

It was St Ives artist/writer/poet Sven Berlin who coined the term Dark Monarch, stealing it apparently from notorious dabbler in the Black Arts, Aleister Crowley, who developed a concept of sovereignty of the individual with his precept "Do what thou wilt shall be the whole of the Law."

Berlin described the land of West Penwith as a slumbering creature, the Dark Monarch, restless and riddled with labyrinthine caves, mines and superstitions.
In an article in Facet he describes, “The open coliseum of each little cove of sand and rock may be a theatre for any natural or supernatural or unnatural event. The unending presence of the sea breathing ceaselessly over the shoulder of each hill, the rock charged with a thousand sunsets and carved by a hundred years of rain… These events in some way act as the chanting of magicians to open the deeper rooms of experience in man, make him aware of his origins, of being part of nature and the universe at the head of a great unseen procession of Gods, Devils, Spectres and Dragons, of being a channel for unknown and undefined forces, of facing the mystery of life… stimulating painters like Bryan Wynter, John Wells, Barns-Graham, Peter Lanyon, Alfred Wallis, Nicholson, Gabo, Frost…”

“This was a recurring feature of the Cornwall I knew,” continued Berlin in The Coat of Many Colours, “Its primitive nature could not be ignored by those who came here and to whom in so many cases it spelt death or else spiritual anguish of the most devilish kind.”

< see full article The Dark Monarch by Stephen Prince >


 

sketch made at Cape Cornwall 2006

 

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