City Guide to Edinburgh, Scotland

City Guide to Edinburgh, Scotland

Gallery Review: Philip Maltman - Abstract Expressionist Approach to Landscape Art

By Vivien Devlin - Posted on 08 October 2013

Little Big One - Philip Maltman
Show Details
Sutton Gallery

The Sutton Gallery is a welcome and distinctive new addition to the row of art galleries up and down Dundas Street in Edinburgh’s New Town: Modern British and European art at affordable prices.

During October 2013 is an exhibition of bold and vibrant paintings by Philip Maltman who was born in Ayrshire and studied at Hornsey, and then Ravensbourne College of Art and Design. He has enjoyed a successful career showing work at the Royal Academy London, numerous Art Fairs, Demarco Trust, Edinburgh and is included in a list of top ten artists by Saatchi online.

This is a stunning, inspirational selection of abstract landscapes, each capturing aspects of nature through colourful, free-flowing brush strokes.

In a series of works entitled Deluge, the starting point might be the study of trees but the result is an edited image, wild splashes of green to represent leaves in sunlight.

A subtle yet powerful painting, Little Big One, has sketchy explosions of colour against a pure, calm background in a soft shade of stone. Other works appear more detailed, such as blobs of blossom in bright purple on slender green branches.

As Philip Maltman explains:

“I extend my experience of the world by making art … mark making, drawn, painted, scratched, gouged, flooded, scrubbed, stuck, dried or dusted. Drawing comes first but photography is often my most immediate form. I make topographical paintings … which explore a scene's inherent changeability. A beach is continuously changing as tides and the weather bring different features into prominence.”

There is enormous energy in these works, (painted over the past decade), where oils literally seem to be dripping with a fluidity of movement. Abstract marks dance over the canvases with a jazzy yet harmonic rhythm.

The lack of clarity in each scene excites the eye by having to focus on scattered shapes and thick painterly patterns.

Maltman offers a fresh approach to depict the natural world, distilling the original vision down to a fragment of reality. It is for the viewer to assimilate a sense of place and artistic meaning in these imaginatively creative paintings.

Philip Maltman is on until 26 October, 2013