Donna Berwick
MA Painting

Donna Berwick

I am driven by a desire to create expressive, colourful and visually stimulating paintings that find a connection to the familiar but overlooked aspects of people and objects in everyday life. 

As well as a reminder of our industrial past, in painting old utilitarian switches I aim to enhance the reflective surfaces, light and shade to provide the object with a vibrancy, a theatrical edge, a presence that celebrates its longevity and form.

I photographed women familiar to me but caught ‘off guard’ and unposed.  I manipulated the image to create a close up and cropped version which initiated the painting process.  Through mark making and blending colour, tone and shape I filled the picture plane with a semi abstract version of the original, that aims to evoke an impression of the subject through the luminosity of the paint.

I also collaborated with a composer and musicians in an interdisciplinary experiment on the subject of migration.  The live action paintings and musical score that were developed through improvisation and rehearsal led to a narrative based music and painting performance which was recorded as a ‘work in progress’ with plans to further develop it into a live performance event in the future.