Land Remains: A celebration of the work of Kate Davies

When out in the countryside it is the forgotten and neglected corners with their disorderly debris that attract her. The paintings are about the contrast between these untidy, muddy accidents and incidents in the landscape and the lovely distant views of changing light and weather. They are about the precarious balance between order and chaos.

It is important that the paintings convey a sense of space and light, and from time to time she goes out with a sketchbook to draw outdoors. The larger works are made in the studio and develop over a period of months or years, with several worked on at a time. She refers to photographs of different places during the progress of a painting, which represents a distillation of experience and memory. Sometimes she incorporates collaged bits of photographs into the paintings as a way of providing an area of sharp focus, like a half-remembered glimpse of detail. But she also works with the paint as a medium allowing accidents, layers, washes, dribbles, to intervene where necessary. The studio is never tidy, paintings lie on the floor waiting for the drips to dry, other paintings are propped against the walls where she can look at them from the corner of her eye. She will often rework, change her mind, hoping that a certainty will arise and continue like this until she is satisfied.

This is an exhibition of the work of Kate Davies, (who has recently been diagnosed with terminal cancer.)  The exhibits are chosen from the artist’s output spanning several years and give the opportunity to appreciate Kate’s lifetime achievements as a painter. Kate Davies studied at Brighton Polytechnic and the Royal Academy Schools in London. After leaving college she supplemented her income as an artist by teaching part time in further and higher education. She then worked as a garden and landscape designer where the working materials also have a life and will of their own.  She has lived and worked in Manchester for almost 35 years.

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