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Chris Ian


Artist Statement

Having moved away from my roots and spent 40 years in heavy industry where process is everything, I find myself picking up the threads both left behind and gathered along the way –

•    A fascination with the landscape and man’s impact
•    Change and displacement
•    Lonely or neglected places

In other words an interest in legacy, the one we have been left and the one we will leave behind.
The ability to create colour images has been available for many years and some of my work is in colour media – mainly digital imaging. Such images, I find, are of the moment and can depict the ‘now’ and the future.

However, I am intrigued by the hold monochrome images still have over us to this day and their ability to be timeless and moody. One can imagine this going back to our ancestors making marks on cave walls using scorched sticks in the orange light from a guttering flame. The very phrases we use conjure up unsettling thoughts

•    The Heart of Darkness
•    Afraid of the Dark
•    Our Darkest Hour
•    It’s always Darkest before Dawn
•    Going over to the Dark Side
•    The Dark Arts

It is, perhaps, no coincidence that these effects I seek lend themselves to the “older” of the traditional media. Charcoal, perhaps the oldest media, is one of my favourites with its ability to capture mood and the ease with which it can be used outdoors to create spontaneous works. I relish the careful process control of chemical etching of intaglio plates and of photographic film developing.
Hence a combination of legacy, a need to depict and convey a feeling of time has brought my practice to its present state where the subject and the timeframe drive the medium.