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I'm an arts journalist & PR consultant living and working in Scotland. I've been a journalist for more than 25 years. I write a regular column for Scottish quality newspaper, The Herald. I deliver a PR service with an arty bent and work on a consultancy basis with arts organisations, including Scotland's leading creative industries festival, XpoNorth & broadcast support body, ScreenHI. I am currently co-writing a book about the celebrated Scots artist, George Wyllie, with his daughter Louise. Instrumental in making a celebration of his life's work happen in 2012. For more information, see www.georgewyllie.com When I'm not being a mum/working, I talk to my dog. He laps it up. Contact me on janpatience@me.com (All work © Jan Patience)

Wednesday, 7 October 2009

Written for Sue Biazotti's Colonsay exhibition, August 2008

AUGUST 1 – AUGUST 15 2008

We all appreciate the big moments in our life because they are usually well documented. Birth, marriage, and even death are all, to a large extent, public events, with an extended cast on the sidelines looking in from a distance.
Perfect moments are a different matter altogether. Private, self-contained and achingly personal, all too often, they slip past unobserved. Gossamer-like, they vanish into thin air until – perhaps years later – a smell, a taste or a sound triggers off a memory.
Award-winning painter Sue Biazotti has an innate ability to capture these moments on canvas, be it in abstract form, in a landscape or in one of her figurative paintings.
A Biazotti painting shimmers with lifeblood. It is crafted in such a way that the artist has poured her soul into brush and canvas, creating smooth layers of colour and form in such a way that even she is amazed when she steps back and looks in on the emerging scene.
Viewers are attracted to the inner peace at the core of her work, be it on the grand scale of many her landscapes and abstract work, or the smooth curves and almost breathless energy of her famous underwater swimmers. A yoga practitioner and teacher, she melds her skill as a draughtsman with an instinctive feeling for the human form, as well as the soul which binds it all together.
For her first exhibition at The Poolside Gallery, she has drawn on recollections of childhood holidays spent on the island and mingled these memories of times past with the experience of bringing her own two children to Colonsay some 20 years later.
The resulting body of work is fresh, unsentimental and quite beautiful. Most of the paintings are small, which adds to the resonance of the subject matter. We have scenes which every one of us will relate to, be it from memories of childhood summer holidays spent puddling around on the beach, oblivious to time and tide, or from our own childrens’ early years, which all too often evaporate in a rush of domestic chaos and physical exhaustion.
Sue Biazotti first came to Colonsay with her parents and siblings in the 1960s. She has vivid memories of camping on the beach at Makrins, running wild and building dams in the sand until dusk, an experience which her own two children, Gabriella and Matteo repeated when she returned to the island as a parent with her husband Jaime.
The new paintings in this exhibition are intensely personal, intimate studies which have resulted from a deliberate decision to pull back from large open expanses of sea and sky – a trademark of her past studies of Colonsay, some of which are on show in this exhibition.
In doing so, she has managed to zone in on what makes Colonsay such a special place; namely its timelessness. In a world which seems to be running downhill at a gathering pace, Colonsay remains rooted in the stillness of the here and now. Children in their instinctive way, respond to this mood, as does Sue Biazotti, an instinctive artist to her very core.

Jan Patience
August 2008

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