This week I visited Antonia Showering’s ‘Mixed Emotion’ exhibition at Timothy Taylor. With one week left of her exhibition, join us as we explore Antonia’s work and recent developments. I’m sure you’ll agree that she is one to watch!
We are big fans of Antonia’s work and are proud to have been one of the very first to put her in the spotlight. After achieving her MFA in Fine Art from the Slade School of Fine Art, we had an ‘In Conversation’ with Antonia at Charlotte Street Hotel in November 2019. We chose the hotel due to our shared love for The Bloomsbury Group and discussed how the group continues to be a great source of inspiration for our work in different ways.
Since then, the pandemic has not slowed Antonia’s productivity and she has become an acclaimed artist in demand, recently being the subject of a solo show at White Cube, London. This is Timothy Taylor’s first exhibition with Antonia and features her new paintings. I get so much pleasure indulging in the colour palette and the way her compositions reveal memories and emotions she has experienced. The paintings don’t feel over worked and they give me the sense of constant movement and flux, reflecting the way our mind works.
Antonia’s paintings are created using the ‘Pentimento’ process. This Italian word means to repent and relates to the addition and subtraction of paint or materials. You will notice sumptuous, velvety mountains frequently appear in the background of her compositions. These mountains have been a reoccurring element in most of her art since she was a child as a result of her connection with her Swiss grandmother.
Antonia’s method starts with brushing the canvas with distemper, then spilling blots of oil paint across the canvas. This subdues the ‘terror of beginning a painting’ and it helps to ‘find a shape within the composition that draws her into a structure’. Abstract forms are created when the paint begins to dry and Antonia gives them life by transforming them into an object of significance or a human figure.
The subject of family plays an intrinsic role in Antonia’s works, with her own family often featuring. She finds that anonymity is very important for the observer and one should to be able to project their own feelings and experiences onto the pieces. She thinks that overly specifying the work with titles and details can kill its impact. Her figures appear genderless and ageless.
What a gift to be able to record and share memories and experiences over time through painting. Perhaps this work will conjure up your own personal memories. You can certainly look at each painting over and over again, discovering something new each time. I think this is always the hallmark for work that stands the test of time and this applies to fine art, architecture and interior design.