Jen Collee studied fine art at Glasgow School of Art and was awarded a first for her dissertation in Historical and Critical studies and has also gained an honours degree in science. She currently works from her Edinburgh studio and has exhibited at the Scottish National Gallery, Visual Art Scotland and the Scottish Society of Artists show alongside the Glasgow Art Fair, the Edinburgh Festival and Art London. Her work hangs in many public and private collections worldwide.
My childhood holidays were all spent in Crail, Fife and I lived every moment I could outside on the beach, I absolutely adored the place. Latterly Tiree, Uist and the west coast have inspired me.
Loving the outdoors I have always loved landscape painting.
And the waters edge has become my latest muse.
The line that divides the human space from the wilderness of sea, that huge body of water empty of human presence as far as the eye can see with its changing moods meets the solid shore. The shift in kinetic energy and the metaphoric edge of nature and culture invites a playfulness.
The visual world is to me is that sea of rhythms, energies, and mathematical proportions. The fractal structures are there and the golden mean. Precise colour is very important, how it conveys time and place or when abstracted how it energises and reacts with other colours to create space or tension or light.
Our mind divides the world up into objects, then into subjects with boundary and significance. Landscape painting permits a full focus on formal aesthetics and a considerable amount of mark making. So I can move from close realistic observation to wild energetic gestures“
Sometimes my painting closely relates to how we see the landscape always attempting to capture with minimal effort the essence of what I see rather than the laborious detail which I feel sometimes weights the emotion. At other times I like to reduce to the most simple and powerful forms and relationships to emphasise their nature. One very good piece of advice from a Glasgow tutor was to never use artistic artifice, marks, drips, splashes, as decoration but only when they really mean and earn their place, so playing close attention to this distinction is crucial.