Conceived on Zoom in the first few weeks of the pandemic, ‘Beyond the door’ will feature portraits by Stella and 14 other artists in the group and contemplates life on both sides of the doors that have defined our lives during the last 18 months.
Doors have been both a protection from a hostile outside world and the means of escape from confinement.
Our individual worlds have been disrupted in ways unthinkable back in 2019. We have been deprived of many things but one thing we have had plenty of is time.
Strange things happened to our perception of time, something that is noted in many of the narratives that will be contained in our catalogue.
With time comes reflection and both are the stock in trade of portrait artists. Longevity and thoughtfulness are what distinguishes a portrait from a photograph.
Our acclaimed Guest Artist, Melissa Scott-Miller, has spontaneously chosen to paint herself reflected in a mirror together with her family in the small interior in which they spent lockdown together.
During the first wave of Covid our attention was rightly focussed on the NHS and frontline workers. The current exhibition takes a longer perspective. Our sitters come from all walks of life; they are all people we know and include teachers, out of work creatives, street cleaners, people working from home and inevitably our family members and ourselves.
Everyone has been affected by lockdowns and restrictions; some have weathered it better than others. There are some advantages. Many of us have learned new skills, coping strategies and ways to connect with others. We have entertained ourselves online and met our neighbours at street gigs. We have especially cherished our families and friends.
And as the remarkable Covid survivor Robin Hanbury-Tenison dramatically will attest in the foreword to our catalogue, we have learned a new appreciation of the natural world outside our doors.
The Lots Road Group studied portraiture The Heatherley School Of Fine Art ‘Our portrait Your story’ sums up our approach to portraiture where, uniquely for a group, we tell the story of our sitters in words as well as picture.
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