Melanie-Max-Portrait

I think of my expressive and abstract paintings as found landscapes and as visual journeys. They evolve on the canvas and the focus of the painting gradually comes into view.

Through her paintings, Melanie Max seeks to capture the elemental exchange between the sky, sea and earth. Living & painting on a narrowboat on the River Ouse affords Max a privileged position to witness the unique landscapes laid out by The Fens. Max focuses on the nature of light, especially the forms and gradients created by its interplay with water on the British coastline: reflecting off the sea, filtering through mist & clouds and driving through precipitation.

Her painting process takes form in various ways - sometimes through subtle vertical strips, which make their way across the canvas, one strip slightly offset from the next - to wide, sweeping and blended brushwork. Progressively more, Max delineates the meeting point of the earth and sky with a sharp, highlighted line, effectively dissecting the canvas at the horizon and introducing a focal point within the soft planes of colour. The atmospheric paintings entice the viewer into their calm & expansive ambience, even in the more dramatic paintings, where the turbulent water is rendered with an impasto technique.

Born and brought up in Cornwall and Devon respectively, Max graduated from the prestigious Chelsea School of Art, London. Her work has been exhibited nationally in the UK from Ely to the Isles of Scilly.

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