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Russell Dorey - McCully & Crane - Rye.jpg

Russell Dorey


Paintings are poems or short stories peopled with the things I have around me. My work is almost exclusively Still Life.

I assemble loosely balanced groups of objects recombining a cast of familiar objects, jugs, bottles, boxes and pots as characters in shallow, deliberately limited space.

I involve photographic images in compositions, like windows, so that I can play with spaces set within spaces and so I can get the whole world onto my shelf.

I’ll make an accurate plotted drawing for each painting. Drawing seems to be methodical work, like building a wall and I start drawing knowing that I can finish. Drawing is my scaffolding. Painting is different; more like juggling.


My Still Lives are formal compositions, measured and plotted, reduced
and balanced but I hope that they’re not dull and dry.


Working analytically I try to bind the objects together. Sometimes I will paint the same passage day after day; I might scrape the canvas down and repaint a transition of light into shadow, trying to understand how the shapes fit together to describe the space, hoping that the surface will mesh and watching for that alchemy as colour and tone become light.


Some of these canvasses have been worked at for months and a just a few have arrived like gifts, like photographs emerging in developer.


Russell's work

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