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About Kate Giles

Kate Giles grew up in Norwich.Having read English at Oxford she trained at Camberwell and Falmouth Schools of Art.She has exhibited regularly ever since,particularly in London and East Anglia but also internationally.Her work can be found in numerous public and private collections in the UK and abroad [eg.  The Britten Pears Foundation,Aviva,Banco Sabadell].Exhibitions have arisen from a variety of residencies and commissions [eg.The National Theatre,The Whitechapel Bell Foundry, The Kazan Cathedral, St Petersburg]. Her work has,for many years,focused on a keen and intimate vision of the landscape of her native East Anglia.From 2005 she was based in Suffolk  [Butley Mills Studios] returning to work and live permanently in Norfolk in 2015.

Her work was hung alongside that of Constable, Turner, Creffield and Kossoff at The Salisbury Museum 2016-17 ['Constable in context: Salisbury Cathedral from the Meadows in perspective']

About the Work

Drawing on the spot intensively is the groundwork of all that I later paint. It feeds on the specifics of particulars: tree, field, angle, light, shadow; alert to the weathering of the year; a vital initial response to the seized moment. Back in the studio, painting is to digest, remake, discover and unearth. The subject becomes, not so much the object, as what resonates between memory, presence and the feeling at the time. Francis Bacon wondered how possible it was in a painting to “catch the mystery of appearance within the mystery of making”. He knew that “by some accidental brush marks, suddenly appearance comes in with a vividness that no accepted way of doing it would have brought about”. Admiring Cezanne for his “courage to put down what he didn’t see” Roger Hilton aimed at work that would “swing out into the void”, into a so called “not as yet”. Constable felt that painting was simply “another word for feeling” (his passionate “language of the heart”). The seen as unseen. Keenly aware of the inheritance of Dutch and English landscape traditions, for me Constable remains a lifelong taproot and lodestar. He declared his “limited and abstracted art” to be “found under every hedge and every lane”, one alert to a deep physical engagement with embodied life. Surely this conviction and urgency of response is what inhabits “knowing something by heart” and must lie behind Bacon’s mystery as to how appearance can come in within the mystery of making. 

Kate Giles 2019