Tess Williams Inward 2014
Inward, 2014

Tess Williams is a London based artist specialising in painting and painting installation. She is currently at Central Saint Martins where she will complete her MA Fine Art in June 2015. She has exhibited widely across London at galleries including The Griffin Gallery, Studio 1.1, Schwartz Gallery and recently had a solo show at Chelsea College of Art. In 2014 Tess was chosen to be part of UK Young Artists where she exhibited in Leicester at Two Queens Gallery. Here she delves into her work process…

Tess Williams M.M.B 2015
M.M.B., 2015

At the moment my work exists within the boundaries of traditional / deconstructed painting, installation and large-scale collage; exploring where one discipline ends and the next begins.

I am first and foremost concerned with the sensual immediacy of paint and its interaction with the porous materials that I chose to apply it to. My work explores the unprimed materiality of these textiles and how they can be enhanced, altered or adapted by paint. I never prime my materials in order to leave as much amount of absorption as possible. Meaning that the material and the paint become one, rather than the paint just lying on top of a surface, as with many primed paintings. The materiality of the work as a whole is important to me, allowing its evocative power to resonate.

I am also engaging with how folds, creases and movement within the materials can act as a form of mark making, creating shadows, lines and shapes, whilst adding new tones to the colours of the paint. I also explore the way folds introduce both inside and outside, in front and behind, what this evokes, compared with the emphasis on surface alone of traditional painting. Much of my work is questioning the role of the wooden stretcher within my work and what importance it plays. It adds a familiar structure for me to work with but can also hinder my freedom when making.

Tess Williams Outside In 2015
Outside In, 2015

Tess Williams Now you see me 2015
Now you see me, 2015

I prefer to be surrounded by rich and absorbent visual stimuli in order to add depth and balance to what I perceive to be a world saturated with screen-based imagery.  I tend to disconnect from flat shiny impenetrable metals/plastic surfaces, and highly photoshopped or screen-based imagery. It is also because I cannot sense the physical touch that I veer away from this type of work. For me, the physical link between artist and viewer is important.

My reason for making the work I do is my reaction to the constant desire I have to produce things that don’t already exist. It is my way of working through everything I see and experience in daily life. It is how I process my ‘thinking’ and get the inside out. I want to make things that feel ‘right’ to me, in order to counteract all the things I see around me every day that seem so aesthetically wrong. ‘Right’ meaning imperfectly perfect and visually satisfying, not just ‘correct’.

Tess Williams Pocket 2015
Pocket, 2015

Tess Wiliams T.T.W 2014
T.T.W., 2014

Collections of my visual memories and imprints coalesce into single paintings. These visual memories are documented by my support work of collage, photography and print. This is becoming an increasingly important way of sustaining the visual input into my practice and solidifying the feed of information, which I then translate into the final pieces.

I aim to create work that engages with the space it is placed in. Creating a dialogue between the install space and the work; the wall and the materiality of the painting.
Total immersion in a space/artwork is enveloping and grounding, and I find this to be one of the most engaging physical experiences as a viewer.

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