I first fell in love with Angela Charles’ beautiful, abstract landscapes during Somerset Art Weeks in 2008, shortly after I’d moved to the South West with my family. I knew instantly that Juliana would be drawn to her work too, being such a big fan of Cy Twombly’s paintings, and I was right; we’ve been working with Angela ever since.
I particularly love the way that Angela builds up layers of colour in her work, sanding them down to create a smooth, yet richly textured surface. Sometimes the different coloured layers are revealed and sometimes they are hidden, a bit like the geology of the Dorset and Somerset coastlines Angela is inspired by.
I’m deeply struck by the effect the weather has on the mood of each piece Angela creates, her palette and the force of the marks she makes, being driven by this ever-changing external force. Her paintings are beautiful and evocative and resonate with all that emotion we have for landscape.
Angela’s works evolve from rudimentary pen sketches and written notes about the landscape, the light and the sea. These records act as a catalyst for her paintings which, rather than a direct response to a certain place, represent a memory of a location and the felt experience of being there. In some of the works Angela becomes so absorbed by the painting process that little is recognisable from the original sketch.
Working on spray-primed aluminium and wooden boards, which allow for every texture to be her own, Angela builds up layers of sanded-down acrylic. The layers are often wiped away forcefully with cloths or her fists and pierced with marks made by pencils or dentist tools. Through areas of calm and moments of frantic mark making, the resulting paintings reveal her sense of awe at the South West coast.
Born in Brighton in 1966, Angela studied at Worthing College of Art from 1983 – 86. She went on to study Fine Art & Textiles at Goldsmiths College, University of London, graduating in 1989. Since then, Angela has exhibited successfully throughout the UK. Her first one person show was held at Sherborne House, Dorset in 2003. More recently, she has been shown at the London Art Fair.