A new Charlie Baird show, Scratching the Surface, has just opened at The Art Stable
in Child Okeford (21 April – 12 May).
Baird, always one of our favourite West Country artists, continues his exploration of landscape from the south west and his native Scotland. His beautiful, evocative paintings always take you on a journey and in this show each piece references the artist’s memory of light, place, mood.
Talking to Country Calling Baird said: ‘The title Scratching the Surface alludes both to some of the techniques used – scratching into paint and layering back on and also to some of the more abstract work which relates to the history of our landscape and the traces left by the past, fields, hedges, walls, buildings.’
Baird adds that many pictures are taken from a starting point of memory, some back to his childhood, and then develop from there.
‘Sometimes a picture will start with one theme and an ‘accident’ will direct the canvas in another direction. I enjoy the open possibilities of a picture as it develops (or falls apart!)’
‘Beach Café is a memory of a trip to the beach with my children and it evokes the mood of the day and place but bears little relation to the actual site.’
Allotment shown here below is derived from flashing past in a train and seeing the patterning of vegetable plots in a split second and using it as starting point for colour and structure.
Baird grew up in Scotland and studied at the Instituto Allende, San Miguel, Mexico and the Wimbledon School of art. Throughout his career he has had solo exhibitions in London, Europe and America. For the last twenty years he has lived in Dorset, reflecting the local landscape in much of his work.