John Virtue Towner Gallery Eastbourne

This exhibition is quite overwhelming. The scale of the paintings is magnificent. The triptychs are 21 feet wide. You have to really negotiate the canvas with your eyes to take in the whole composition (and that’s the point, it makes you feel so small against the sea). As a confirmed colourist I wasn’t sure how I would feel about the paintings but I was bowled over by them. And they don’t lack colour – the greys are so expressive. I really enjoyed the light grey over black, with white overlaid and them some dark grey on top and so on. The marks are amazing, as are the layers of texture and paint on the surface of the painting.
I hadn’t been aware of his association with the National Gallery and that he had completed a residency there from 2003-2005.

John Virtue The Sea

John Virtue The Sea

The was my favourite painting from the exhibition. The simplicity is very disarming and I really like the light square in the top right hand corner.

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