Liz Tolan - Look This Way

Poster LTW LRLiz's interest in photographic images of people began with making speedy drawings from the slideshow of photographs on a resting laptop. The attraction then was to the unusual or imperfect - images where a thumb had got in the way, photos where the subject was disappearing off the edge and so on. Continuing from this, photographs were selected as a source for painting but were either already damaged in some way or were mediated by taking photographs of photographs and further images of those photos on a screen, printing them on a printer usually running low on ink.


Liz Tolan Ribbons GirlOld family photographs and some found images are the basis of the series of portraits of girls. Some of these were studio portraits, some more informal snapshots. She was interested in the way people were expected to look in these situations - the clothes they were dressed in and the expressions that were elicited. These are not portraits of the girls but portraits of photographs. However, in making the paintings she developed strong feelings of empathy with the subjects


Liz Tolan The Men aLarger paintings came from media sources where politicians have been captured in the wild or, in contrast, a group has deliberately posed. The image from the White House office seemed bizarre in that so many men were gathered together yet none was looking at another. The group of Tories also seemed caught in revealing poses. The third of these paintings was based on a printed still from a propaganda video and what interested her was the contrast between the intended message and the pastel colours and blurred edges of the image. As with the girls, the subject of these paintings is not the people, but the photographs.


Look This Way 1And the overarching subject of all the paintings is paint itself, and what it can get up to, especially when left alone in a dark room.









    27th April to 18th May 2019


    Liz Tolan



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