London based artist from Hertfordshire with a first class BA in Fine Art Painting from University of the Arts London.
Contact by email for collaborations, commissions or purchase of original works at:

 

emmaphillips98@outlook.com

Instagram: @ephillips_art

Artist Statement, May 2021

Exhibitions & Publications
Late Britain Zine, January 2022
Body, BlocParty Magazine, October 2021
Memento Mori, Air Gallery Manchester, October 2021

Beyond Art, The Holy Art (online) August 2021
Final Notice, Wimbledon College of Art,  June 2021

Xhibit 2020 UAL (online) April 2021
Hertfordshire Stories Hertfordshire Libraries, Aug –December 2019
Oaklands Collage St Albans, June 2018
St Albans Cathedral, December 2018
The Royal Overseas League, January 2018
Mall Galleries, January 2018
Stevenage Pi Gallery, June 2017

WCA Prunella Clough Painting Prize, Jun 2020
Royal Academy of British Artists Rising Stars, Jan 2018
Best in Show: Oaklands Collage Art & Design Showcase, Jun 2018
Hertfordshire Art Guild Award  June 2017

 

The British Museum Youth Collective, 2020
https://www.britishmuseum.org/learn/young-people/british-museum-young-peoples-programme#__20-programme-highlights

My Story / Herts Memories, 2019- 2021
Funded by Arts Council England and presented by Hertfordshire Library Service, in partnership with Nysa ProjectsHertfordshire Archives and Local Studies (HALS)YC Hertfordshire, and Hertfordshire based artists.

 




 

Through processes of walking, photographing, editing and drawing, my work explores notions of liminal space, edgelands, and borderlines, both physical, and symbolic.
Initially informed by research into psychogeography, town planning and urban/rural borders,  many of these works depict subtle moments of everyday surrealism, where bleakness meets romanticism, or the industrial meets the ancient.
Some demonstrate the literal collision between manmade and natural wilderness; for example,  an urban garden transformed by years of neglect, or a roadside mass of icicles, accidentally sculpted by passing cars.

Other works attempt to address the politics of space, where social inequalities are manifested in physical boundaries, enforcing restrictions on freedoms to explore the country side, to protest, or to simply walk down the street after dark. In these contrasting images, I reflect upon the inner conflict of fear vs resilience, the manifestations of mass grief and anger at sites of tragedy, and the physical limitations of inhabiting a female body.

 

Influenced by psychogeographic theory and notions of the ‘derive’, I begin by exploring my surroundings on foot wherever possible. Working intuitively I use my own emotional or psychological responses as a compass and document points of interest through digital and analogue photography.

 In accordance with the subject matter, a limited and carefully restrained use of materials is essential to the work. Images are often transformed through modes of erasing, cropping, isolating and re-rendering subjects to bring out their deeper resonances with the quiet power of simple materials like graphite, watercolour and paper. A universal signifier of creative freedom and possibility, the blankness of the paper acts as much as an invitation to think and imagine as it is to draw. By removing all background noise and suspending forms in white space, I invite viewers to fill in the gaps around these objects, to re-imagine the worlds they might exist in or ponder the hidden narratives that could surround them, prompted by subtle clues – a scribble of graffiti, or a tattered scarf.

Providing a sense of balance, this compositional decision also allows for an intense focus on detail, which seeks to create a sense of intimacy, and demonstrate my own close relationship with the materials. The slow process of intensive observation and strict rendering of images is almost meditative, in the repetition of gestures required to transcribe the intricate patterns of light, shadow, and colour within the complex folds of piece of fabric, or the grooves and textures of tree bark. Using this to draw viewers closer to the works and spend more time with them, I hope to reflect back this experience of meditative observation.

The delicate quality of graphite and watercolour also speaks of the transient states of the subjects as well the temporal nature of the artworks themselves. Some works appear unfinished, as if parts have been rubbed or washed away, faded with time, or absorbed by the ephemerality of the paper itself. This also acts as a reminder of the potential of modest materials to create something exquisite, and the joy of finding beauty in the mundane.