In Conversation: Rachel Lancaster and Paul Smith: ONLINE EVENT

30 June 2020 

In Conversation: Rachel Lancaster and Paul Smith

Tuesday 30th June 8pm-9pm





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This week artist Rachel Lancaster will be talking about her painting practise with Paul Smith, vocalist for Maxïmo Park and solo artist.


About Rachel Lancaster:

Rachel Lancaster's practice is focused on painting and its intersections with the languages of cinema, music and photography. Photographic ‘stills’ from found moving imagery, alongside an archive of her own photographs are selected from, edited and then translated into oil paintings. Lancaster's paintings represent detailed fragments of a greater narrative. She is drawn to seemingly insignificant passing shots, extreme close ups of inanimate objects, common place domestic interiors; the split second moments that are “in-between” the action. Divorced physically from their position within a narrative structure, these paintings become abstract, ambiguous and open ended as to the unknown events which have preceded or may follow.

The process of remaking these images in paint is used to draw out the uncanny and the potential psychological charge within source imagery. The paintings are made by applying successive thin glazes of translucent oil paint, many layers of colour and texture accrue over time. This technique encourages a dichotomy of definition and abstraction. The surface of the paint creates an array of optical effects; the anticipated details within the surface of the paint often give way to loose and minimal rendering on closer inspection by the viewer. Cropping, colour and mark making are manipulated in order to play upon the latent 'otherness' and dreamlike qualities often found in cinema and how this can be reflected in painting.

Rachel Lancaster (b.1979) lives and works in Newcastle Upon Tyne. She has exhibited widely and taken part in numerous projects, performances and artist residencies both nationally and internationally. In 2015 she was invited to be ‘Artist In Residence’ at Alewive Brook Road in New York, former residence and studio of Elaine De Kooning. In 2018 Lancaster was shortlisted for the Contemporary British Painting Prize. Rachel Lancaster is a selected member of the Workplace Foundation Community of Artists.


About Paul Smith:

Paul Smith is a musician best known as the singer for the British alternative rock group Maxïmo Park. He briefly worked as an art teacher and studied art history at Newcastle University after completing a Foundation course at Cleveland College of Art & Design. Maxïmo Park released their debut album on Warp Records in 2005, and Smith continues to perform and record with the band, who are currently recording their seventh album.

Away from the band, he has collaborated with poet Lavinia Greenlaw, as well as composing a 26-minute a cappella piece of music for Great North Run Culture. He released his debut solo album, 'Margins' in 2010, alongside 'Thinking In Pictures', a book of Polaroid photographs. In 2014 Smith teamed up with Field Music's Peter Brewis to record an album, 'Frozen By Sight', derived from his travel writing, featuring string arrangements by Brewis. Last year he composed new music for Unfolding Theatre's 'Hold On, Let Go' production.

His latest solo album 'Diagrams' (2018) features Workplace Foundation artist Rachel Lancaster on vocals and guitar!