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Folkestone artist in the spotlight

PUBLISHED: 08:00 02 November 2010 | UPDATED: 18:06 20 February 2013

Folkestone artist in the spotlight

Folkestone artist in the spotlight

From the decidedly representative to the three-dimensional, Mark Sutherland creates two very distinct art forms in two very different spaces

Folkestone artist in the spotlight


From the decidedly representative to the three-dimensional, Mark Sutherland creates two very distinct art forms in two very different spaces

Mark Sutherland has the luxury of two studios, one a great space in Folkestones Old High Street, which he shares with his young son, an aspiring painter. The other studio is in his back garden, fundamentally a shed, were he creates his sculptures.

I am intrigued. Mark tells me: The work appears quite different, although there is a connectedness about the sculpture, which is also there in the line of the drawings on canvas in charcoal, ink, pen, pencil and oil. A man of many talents, then.

The sculptures play between the interactional and the organic and some move with mechanics and electronic elements. Mark explains: They are about the joints: getting something organic like felt and silk, and how this can attach to, for example, metal or wood. One sculpture, Nexus #303, includes tissue paper and most of them are about creating form out of line. But they are also about the moving parts.

As a child, Mark lived near an aerodrome and people would make planes out of balsa wood, both biplanes and monoplanes, a stimulus for his sculpture. He tells me more about the connections with his paintings, which are for the most part nudes.

The sculptures are without people and the people are without other things: both are organic forms. If I didnt study nudes and the angles of how things form, the natural form for example of legs crossed, my sculptures would not be informed.


Its an obsession to create. If Im not doing art, I end up being very cranky

The sculptures are on a human scale and are about adult person height, but unlike humans the sculptures come apart so that they can be taken in a car or in a train, or stored. The nudes, on the other hand, are about 50 x 40cms. I like that size, its a size that you can get involved with. The bigger ones are also three foot by two foot. I may be doing drawings and paintings at the same time.

Mark tells me how he works. I can do drawing at night, then painting during the day and perhaps in the evening I can do an engraving, when my son Liam has gone to bed. A painting may take him eight to 10 hours, but its very variable. The tones of the nudes are fairly sober, but extremely attractive.

Mark came to Folkestone from South Africa, a big step. You have a different set of influences when youre working at the other end of Africa, he comments as I ask about his artistic heroes. These are Leonardo, Rembrandt, the Impressionists, Lucien Freud, quite a varied heritage.

But why does Mark paint or sculpt? Its an obsession to create. If Im not doing art, I end up being very cranky. Ive been a creative director in an advertising agency. I have worked in a crche, but if Im too busy to create art, Im not as nice a person. He adds: My art pays for itself. Essentially the paintings and drawings pay for paint and material to make the sculpture. But because the sculptures are big, they are difficult to take around to galleries, so I tend to just keep making them!

While Im doing a sculpture, normally by the time Ive finished one therell be drawings for another item, so one leads to 10 more, so if I ever come up short, Ill pick up my books. The drawings and paintings tend to do a similar thing.

A young artist needs, he says: To start and then not worry about what you are doing. You need to work on building up a style. You just need to do it and do more of it. And dont be precious about it. Also, you need to have fun.

Mark is an artist of great humour and his studio is definitely worth a visit!

GET IN TOUCH

Mark Sutherland often shows in galleries around Folkestone, or you can visit him in his studio, 49 The Old High Street, Folkestone.



Tel: 07854 131599

email: art@marksutherland.co.uk

website: www.marksutherland.co.uk

Tel: 07854 131599 email: art@marksutherland.co.uk website: www.marksutherland.co.uk


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