Brendan Lyons and Michele Fletcher win painting prize
AIR members Brendan Lyons and Michele Fletcher awarded joint first prize in FRINGEMK Painting Prize 2010.
Brendan Lyons and Michele Fletcher have been awarded joint first prize with two other artists, for the annual FRINGEMK Painting Prize. The selectors were unable to agree on an outright winner, and therefore the four shortlisted artists were awarded the prize together. They will each receive £2000 of prize money.
FRINGEMK is an independent artist-led, not-for-profit, fully constituted, committee run organisation whose aim is to support and promote excellence in the arts. The FRINGEMK painting prize was created to provide an annual survey of painting within the British Isles and the selectors are leading curators and artists with a connection to Milton Keynes.
Brendan Lyons uses the traditions and references of Western painting as a base from which to investigate various points of interest. His work deals with issues of perception, implied space, surface, language, history, time, attachment, ambiguity and association.
Lyons said of his prize winning work: "The painting consists of dried and unsupported paint alone. What may appear to be polythene sheets, parcel/hazard tape, safety netting, corrugated cardboard, a ball - are in fact just unsupported paint alone. This creates a perceptual and conceptual blurring."
Michele Fletcher's painting A Lament for Samuel Palmer is a tumult of luminescent turgidity. The viewer peers into a tangle of undergrowth which contains the hint of an opening or entrance, but any figuration or imagery is smothered by foliage. This natural theme runs throughout the artist's work.
Fletcher comments: "My paintings both bemoan and question the possibility of a visionary experience in contemporary painting. Dreamlike spaces of heightened colour take their influence from a variety of sources with the natural world serving as a point of departure for the painting."
Fletcher's work suggests a nostalgic and spiritual subjectivity whilst bearing discreet yet politicised subtexts, often focused around femininity, referencing the paintings and writings of many of the 19th century Romanticists like Palmer and Blake.
For more information on FRINGEMK and the shortlisted artists click here »
First published: a-n.co.uk September 2010
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