The collection of paintings in this exhibition represents work that spans many years and include some of my favourite subjects. I still enjoy the thrill of travelling to the country and various parts of the harbour and coastline to access different painting locations, providing inspiration and motivation to paint en plein air.
Recently I travelled to the Blue Mountains and painted on the western side. I especially enjoyed setting up the easel on the Jenolan Caves Road, which allowed wonderful glimpses back across the Megalong Valley to the escarpment of the Blue Mountains.
There are also a number of Venice paintings in this exhibition. I spent several weeks there in 2015 and found it exhilarating and inspirational. The colour and history of Venice makes it a truly remarkable place to paint and lose yourself.
The south coast of New South Wales is also a favourite location of mine. Rocky headlands, white beaches and sand dunes provide a myriad of subjects for the artist, and I enjoy returning to the area to paint it in its many moods.
As a landscape artist, painting is as much about capturing the light as it is about recording the topography. The emotional response of painting outside is very important in making the works come to life …painting outside gives the work strength and integrity that I believe is difficult to achieve if you painted purely from the studio. Arthur Boyd called this “pure contact with nature” and it allows the senses of the artist to be stimulated, and it is how one responds to the landscape that is fundamental in capturing the essence of the scene.
Ken Knight. April 2017