Dawn Reader

I have been painting the sea for as long as I can remember, and came to realise that what captivated me most in my travels for wonderful waves was the quality of light. I have been especially inspired throughout the years by the Atlantic, Baltic and North Seas, and wondered what it would be like to go even further north…
When the snow fell in London a couple of years back, a new spark of enquiry came and I was moved by the quiet early morning light within a new white landscape and the amazing silence snow brings. I went to the Arctic in 2009 to pursue the midnight sun within a truly icy environment, Iceland in the winter of 2010, and the following year travelled to Antarctica. Although the landscapes are lonely and bleak, there’s a real sense of majestic freedom and complete awe. I try to capture these qualities together with the stillness and tranquillity I found there, in conjunction with the journey of light and freedom I have sought throughout my life as a painter.
By simplifying and softening the forms of the landscape and through using a limited and somewhat muted palette, I aim to extract and focus more on a spiritual serenity. The application of light and dark in my work serves not only to bring depth and perspective but also to emphasise the force and power in creation. I find that the layering of translucent glazes helps to emphasise light and shadow and allows for a rich build of colour and structure. Each painting is unique and commits to canvas a fleeting moment which will never surface again.
The polar regions, although so impressive, are also fragile. I really felt I wanted not only to paint the unspoiled beauty, but also help raise awareness that what we do through the choices we make daily, will effect the longevity of the icecaps and the wildlife they maintain.
All paintings use hand-made gesso primed canvases and safflower oil glazes mixed from high quality pigment.