Natalie Pullen is an artist who makes paintings which are almost drawings, and drawings that are almost paintings. She works
in the mediums of oil bar, watercolour and oil paint on linen canvases, paper and panel. The abstract surfaces reference
landscape and organic forms, and are informed by her body’s relationship to the land during travel and residencies in South
America, rural Spain and the West of Ireland.
In the studio the artist collaborates with her materials in a committed partnership, with all the attention, care, doubt and
struggle such an alliance entails. High quality linen, sized with rabbit skin glue and primed with clear gesso, absorbs stains of
watercolour. Oil bars allow her to draw with paint as she deals with line, shape and colour.
The exhibition shows a series of new paintings alongside process drawings and notebooks, to visually connect the artist’s
experience of making in the studio with the viewer’s experience of looking in the gallery. It is a moment of sharing and
making public during the artist’s ongoing negotiation with the forces of opposition within her practice. Through display she
seeks to point towards the community, labour and care dynamics beyond the individual works, extending to the studio and
gallery settings, and audience itself.
The title of the exhibition references thinking through contemporary painting as a series of paradoxes. Rather that choosing
a position, the artist encourages the viewer to think of the paintings as both…and
Both drawing and painting
Both material and conceptual
Both intellectual and emotional
Both decorative and meaningful
Both resolved and becoming
The exhibition offers a space to be with that which we do not need to fully understand, but can bear witness to anyway.