Picasso’s Dust: Sally Dalton-Brown

October 20, 2015

Sally Dalton-Brown started her painting career in the 80s in South Africa, holding her first co-exhibition in Johannesburg and selling two abstract seascapes, images of which – being from that long-ago time of polaroids – have long since faded.

“From 1982 I was building an academic career and paying the bills. Also, living in small and rented houses across six countries didn’t help because, as my partner will tell you, I’m an extraordinarily messy painter.”  The artist immigrated to Australia in 2003 but even after fixing up the shed, painting was sporadic as work both for the residential College (in the academic and administration areas) and Foundation Studies (teaching literature) took precedence.  Events in 2014 however “provided me with a timely reminder that life is too short to procrastinate so I started painting again, watched by the spiders in the shed and the studio cat. When winter arrived, my long-suffering partner took pity and cleared some space inside.”

The artist works loosely within the style of abstract expressionism, influenced by both Russian and South African artists. She works organically, sometimes starting without plan, dragging the image towards coherence through the interplay of light and form without trying for too representative a construction. This has developed into a “palimpsest” style of painting; overpainting the canvas and scraping back the build-up of paint several times, taking the painting through various iterations. The result leaves a tracery that adds some dynamic depth to the painting. Treeland, for example, was originally a landscape, but after multiple iterations, during which the landscape refused to come into focus, the artist turned the canvas through 90 degrees and removed the top layer. The paint lines excavated revealed the ghostly possibility of a tree, rising from a fluid, slightly glassy base.

Link to Sally Dalton-Brown art page: http://www.picassosdust.com/


One Response to “Picasso’s Dust: Sally Dalton-Brown”

  1. […] this volume proudly showcases Sally Dalton-Brown’s abstract expressionist palimpsest paintings in Picasso’s Dust: Sally Dalton-Brown. Her strong brush strokes on the canvas allow for a personal dialogue between the presented image […]

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