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16 FEB 2012


New paintings by John Lendis


John Lendis (b.1950, British-Australian artist, mid-career)

Exhibition Dates:

25 February – 18 April 2012 (extended from 5 April 2012)

Private View:

4-6pm, Saturday 25 February 2012


Celia Lendis Contemporary Gallery, High St, Moreton-in-Marsh, Cotswolds, GL56 0AF

Price Range:



Mysteries of the Cotswolds reveal another world

ʻRuskin spoke of the imagination as “brooding and dream-gifted”

and John Lendis's work is imbued with just such an imaginative spirit.'

Howard Hull, Director of the Ruskin Foundation and Brantwood Trust, Cumbria, UK

Thursday afternoon (2012), oil on linen, 90x190cm

John Lendis is a painter of landscapes for whom the very idea of ʻlandscape' includes within it human

emotions and memories. He grew up in Nottingham, but as a young artist spent years traveling through the

deserts of Afghanistan, the Middle East and Asia, before arriving in Tasmania, where he established himself

as an important contemporary Australian painter. Today, he lives and works in the Cotswolds and these

exciting new paintings seem to indicate that living in the area suits his artistic vision.

Since his arrival in 2010, Lendis has been struggling to come to terms with the remarkable intensity of the

seasons in this part of Britain. “These paintings were begun in October 2010,” Lendis explains, “during that



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incredibly beautiful autumn which arrived so suddenly with such a shocking violence of colour and which

then departed at an equally alarming speed, completely erased by a covering of thick, white snow.”

ʻWhen I drive through the same place on different days I am confronted by scenes of striking

intensity, created by mist, fog, rain or light; it is nothing short of disorienting.'

ʻThese paintings spring from my daily journeys through the Cotswolds driving my children to school in

Hatherop, driving to my studio in Stowell Park, shopping in Cirencester, driving through Oxfordshire. The

paintings have grown out of these hallucinogenic encounters, mysterious moments, where I have been

overcome by a sudden jolt of awareness that my pragmatic act of driving along the same roads day after

day actually holds within it the sense that I am able to enter into a different world.'

Saturday (2012), oil on linen, 90x190cm

Prior to studying for his Bachelor and Masters degrees in Painting (1996, 2006), Lendis undertook a

Diploma in Textile Design in his hometown of Nottingham (1970) and the artist is somewhat surprised at how

this early attraction to patternmaking and the Arts and Crafts Movement of the 19th Century is present in this

exhibition of work.

Works of complexity and skill

ʻMaking these paintings was incredibly difficult,” Lendis explains, “it was such a technically complex process

and so mechanical – it reminded me so much of producing a wallpaper pattern or designing fabric. Normally,

in my painting, there is the beauty of a singular gesture of paint, a stroke that ʻcompletes' an image and is

unrepeatable. In these works, because they are reflections of themselves, that wasn't possible and I felt at

times that I was actually making ʻanti-paintings'.

ʻEvery stroke had to be replicated up-side-down or back-to-front and trying to build up the layers of glaze in

that way proved incredibly complicated. These works are incredibly dense as well and the intensity of colour



16 FEB 2012

and detail, plus working in glazes with the reflected subjects, requires sustained months of brainpower as

well as the normal demands of painting.'

An International Career

With more than 26 solo exhibitions in Australia, New

Zealand and the United Kingdom, John Lendis

continues to exhibit internationally and his work is

the subject of numerous critical reviews and essays.

He has work in both public and private collections in

the UK and Australia.

Lendis's paintings often engage with historical

expressions of meta-narratives: stories such as the

Crusades, the search for a promised land or the

holy grail and with the margins of great historical

adventures such as the building and subsequent

dissolving of ʻEmpire'. The artist personalises these

narratives and they find connection with his own life,

infusing his paintings with references to earlier

artists and/or writers, who have dealt with similar



For information, high resolution images or to

arrange an interview with the artist, please

contact the gallery by phone: 01608 650852

(Int: +44 1608 650852) or:

Celia Lendis Contemporary represents artists of integrity whose work expresses an authentic

vision, commitment to craftsmanship and an intellectual engagement with the world.

Based in the north Cotswolds town of Moreton-in-Marsh and open since July 2010, Celia Lendis

Contemporary is a member of the selective art and antiques association, LAPADA Modern, and has

exhibited at the Works on Paper Art Fair, Olympia International Fine Art & Antiques Fair and the LAPADA Art

& Antiques Fair at Berkeley Square in London.


Celia Lendis Contemporary

High Street, Moreton-in-Marsh

The Cotswolds, GL56 0AF

T: 01608 650 852



16 FEB 2012



Gallery hours: MON-SAT 10-5pm (Closed Tuesdays)

Regular, direct trains run from London Paddington & Oxford. The gallery is 300m from train station.