Pippa Blake at The Other Art Fair Secret Auction

We are delighted to have Pippa Blake as a participating Artist in our next Secret Auction at The Other Art Fair 2018. Pippa is an artist known for her energetic oil paintings that depict dramatic subjects such as theatrical productions and the view from an aeroplane window.


The Road, Pippa Blake

She was born in Portsmouth, England in 1954, and studied Fine Art (Painting) at Camberwell College of Art, London from 1972 to 1976 gaining a first class BA Hons. During that time she exhibited with the New Contemporaries and in the Stowells Trophy, R.A. In 2005 she graduated from the Visual Arts Programme, West Dean College, Sussex with a Postgraduate Diploma.

Growing up in a creative atmosphere, immersed in painting and drawing. Her focus moved from landscape and still life when she studied at Camberwell, where she became influenced by the Abstract Expressionists, and began creating large scale paintings from personal experience and pure physical mark making. She has spent years going back and forth between figuration and abstraction, notable in her large body of work. Initially being noted to have found working with figures inhibiting and constricting, her figuration works were driven by a desire to say more about the human condition, intrigued and affected by war and conflict. Her work is not intentionally politically charged but has undoubtedly been influenced by the tragedy and futility of conflict.

In her series Utopia: Dystopia, a solo exhibition in 2015, Pippa that takes inspiration from a Chichester Festival Theatre co-production with Out of Joint and Shakespeare’s Globe entitled Pictairn. Blake first thought of making work based on a theatre production several years ago, excited at the prospect of exploring the visuals, atmosphere and psychology of a play.


Our Sentance, Pippa Blake

On the project she says “I am fascinated by the idea of utopia: dystopia, of matters apocalyptic and how humans respond to each other in times of adversity,” she explained. “Although set in 1789 I felt the play was very much a reflection on our own society and issues happening in the world today.”

This series is almost voyeuristic both thematically and in its composition. We are allowed in behind the scenes, watching actors from the wings, and positioned on stage so as to see the glow of the lights facing the actors. The theatricality is not concealed, both the performance and performativity is represented in this series giving the work a double sided quality that shifts depending on how you look at it. Pippa’s painting style is reminiscent of impressionists such as Degas in her ability to capture movement in situ. Her paintings are alive and present, adding to the intimacy of these paintings.


From this day forward, Pippe Blake

Her urban street work also retains this level of movement and vivacity. Representing vast urban blocks using bricks of colour, each brick containing its own pool of blended hues. The artistry and skill involved in these works is impeccable and reveals a unique fluency with the medium. The works evoke the impression of the viewer running through the street, capturing the colours, dimensions and city buzz without the realism of detail.


Even as Cities, Pippa Blake

Pippa has spoken on why she wanted to work with us at the Secret Auction saying ‘To eradicate Hepatitis C in the UK and globally would be a brilliant achievement. To be able to contribute to Art on a Postcard and help in a small way towards the goal of eradicating this debilitating disease means a great deal.’

We are very pleased she feels this way as her work is a great asset to the auction. The Auction will take place at The Other Art Fair 2018.

About the writer

Rosa Torr is a Politics and Philosophy (BA) graduate student from London. Rosa has written for numerous online publications and the University Observer. She is a theatre maker and co-artistic director of BUMP&GRIND Theatre Company. The show she co-wrote Bump was met with critical acclaim at Edinburgh Fringe Festival 2017.

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