About the Artist

Helen Lambert
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I first began painting and drawing to please myself as soon as I was old enough to pick up a paintbrush, and haven't stopped since. Paint has always been my medium of choice. Most of my work is in oils on canvas, and I have a deep love for the richness and flexibility of the medium. That the paint stays live for several days is invaluable to my technique, as I repeatedly work back into the paint adding new contours and hues. The translucency of oil paint plays a crucial role in my creation of skin tones, which I build up slowly using multiple layers.

I also thrive on the unique alchemy of working in collaboration with another artist. This experience is usually improvised and spontaneous, contrasting dramatically with my personal methodology and freeing me to explore new ways of making art. In these experimental collaborations I have worked in oil, acrylic, ink and watercolour on canvas, wood, paper and a variety of other media. Sharing the canvas with another artist, I abandon the need for careful planning and respond intuitively to visual and thematic cues as they appear.

When creating an image my primary motivation is always to produce an object of beauty. My paintings are magic-realist in style, and address the ongoing dialogue which I perceive between nature and supernature. I return time and again to seasonal imagery, exploring the idea of wheel of the year as well as my personal connection to particular landscapes. Mythological narratives provide the backbone of my work, which draws on European folklore, Celtic art forms and my academic background in Classical mythology as well as post-modern understandings of spirituality. The most personally significant of my paintings are figurative icons of pagan and neo-pagan deities, in which I layer symbols and meaning, and explicitly engage with the Christian iconographic tradition. Portraiture presents the greatest illustrative challenge of all: how to tell a meaningful personal story through a single image. I draw on a multitude of symbols in seeking this narrative richness.