To write down why or what I paint is rather difficult as there is no why; I just always wanted to paint. It does seem a crazy thing when I have to analyse it but there it is.
What I paint is slightly different as I can, of course, say I paint things, places and people in the world that excite me and I can respond to anything completely out of the blue as opposed to any intellectual idea.
Essentially it’s the visual world that excites my imagination. It can be images I see anywhere, on a beach, in a room, a news item on the telly, medieval painting, old manuscripts, a visit to a museum plus things I might read or hear to which I have a visual response.
That’s just the beginning. I want the work to be made in a state of ‘not knowing’ how it will turn out, because I want to allow things to happen, to transform with the paint. I don’t want to put pre-conceived ideas onto the painting. What I want from my painting is an imaginative transformation to take place through the paint. Hopefully the paint takes over and I go with it, forgetting any preconceptions, and allow it to arrive. I do know though that I want it to have presence, and energy so that the viewer can respond, but all of that has to come and that’s not always easy. In the end it’s about feeling as opposed to any intellectual analyses.
All of this writing about painting can end up sounding pretentious but essentially for me it’s about letting go and allowing things to happen while I am painting.
Kathleen Thompson, 2012
The Private View was on 26 April 2012. See photos from the event on Facebook