A local painter, whose artistic ambitions began as a youngster more interested in "imagination than in the real world", is sharing his memories of growing up in Jersey in a psychedelic new exhibition.
On display at Jersey Museum's Link Gallery until the end of the month, 'Past and Present' is a visual diary by Rian Hotton containing "nostalgia, transformation and perception."
Rian first started drawing and painting at a very young age and the activity, he admits, seemed to preoccupy him for most of the time. "I was more involved with my imagination than the real world," he explained. "If I wasn't creating, I was building something, this has never stopped."
His first serious art teaching came from Mark Blanchard at De La Salle College. Rian then went on to study art at University. He took the root of Art and Design Foundation in Manchester, then completed a BA (Hons), MA and a further Diploma in differing design fields, all the while honing his drawing, drafting and painting skills.
Pictured: Rian describes his paintings as as “a snapshot of my mind’s eye.”
"In a way, I built a path using my design and build background that lead me to the space where I could continue my art on a full-time basis, unrestricted," Rian said.
"For me, it feels like I have come full circle and the knowledge gained from that journey now manifests itself in my work. My imagination is still ploughing on regardless, fuelled by ever increasing thirst for knowledge, experience and understanding. There is some comfort in knowing that there is an infinite amount of subject matter to draw upon, I'll never lose interest."
Rian describes his paintings - which are either oils on canvas or ply or acrylic on paper - and mix contrasting colours, as “a snapshot of my mind’s eye.”
He usually tries to finish them quickly to move onto the next idea. "I rarely leave a painting unfinished - if I do it is out of sight until I am drawn back to it," Rian said of his creative process.
Pictured: The series of work presented in 'Past and Present' focuses on Rian Hotton’s memories of growing up in Jersey.
"Sometimes you may have a conflict in your mind about the rights and wrongs of a certain topic circulating in the media, I want to paint that," he explained. "Sometimes you find a place that holds a lot of memories and evokes certain feelings of nostalgia, I want to paint that. Sometimes you may have been through a difficult period in life that is still raw, I want to paint that.
"Put simply, I have no rules as to the subject of what I paint - I paint it because I want to remember it, a visual dairy of thought and feeling. Nostalgia is sometimes a strong pull, but this can be superseded rapidly by the learning of a new subject and superseded again by personal circumstance."
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