Julia Sutton began her professional career in the music industry rather than the art world. After graduating from the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, she travelled throughout Europe working as a harpsichord decorator. After eleven years in Paris studying art history, Julia was acquainted with art from all over the world and on her way to forming her own artistic voice. It wasn't until 1982 however, that she succumbed to her painterly inclinations and accepted a place at St Martins School of Art.
What is immediately striking about Julia's work is the boldness of the colours and forms. Strong circular shapes and intense primary colours dominate the canvases and arrest our attention. Such vibrancy is the result of Julia's fascination with the way that colour can create space. She is constantly trying to find ways of making the circular pools of light advance or recede. The effect, she says, can 'either welcome the viewer into the space like a harbour, or invade the spectator's inner world like long forgotten memories come home'.
Julia's inspiration is derived from her surroundings. She works in a studio overlooking Lowestoft Harbour in Suffolk, and many of her paintings are the direct results of her response to the views of the sea and sky. 'I can see how the long evenings in the studio lit up from the beams of the trawlers and the big boats coming in from the rigs, combined with the moon and stars, must have inspired me'.
The artist's ultimate aim is to create movement in her paintings - a 'frisson' created by the juxtaposition of animation within stillness - and she is never satisfied until this end is achieved. It is in this respect that her musical background makes itself felt most forcefully.
In order to attain the desired effect, Julia employs two different modes of painting. The first is used when she starts a piece and works with the canvas on the floor using liquid paint, allowing her to get very close to the surface of the canvas and work 'from the inside'. The second mode involves placing the canvas on an easel, allowing her to step back from the surface and take a more objective viewpoint as well as concentrate on more restrained sections. It is the tension between these two approaches - the controlled and the free - that Julia finds most stimulating.
Julia has received several awards in recognition of her creativity - including the Arts Council England 2003 Grants for Artists Award and the Oppenheim - John Downes Memorial Award, 1985 and 1986. She has had many solo exhibitions and contributed to several collaborative shows in Britain and France. The work displayed on the Londonart site has been carefully selected from a vast body of work by a unique and gifted artist with 25 years of experience behind her.
To view Julia's gallery please click here