In the thirteen years that Beside The Wave Gallery has been showing paintings by Andrew Tozer, there has been a constant progression in the work we have seen. His is an ongoing journey of discovery in paint and in this latest collection we see again his ability to evolve.
Known for his plein-air paintings of Cornwall, Tozer is most often described as a landscape artist; Impressionism being sited as a major influence. In this exhibition land and seascapes remain the key focus, with a sense that these are paintings laid bare, the work is personal, containing all he knows not just what he sees; he is painting from the heart.
If a subject moves him he feels compelled to ‘put it down’. And that is what he has done.
Paint is applied quickly, in deft flicks with a surety and confidence; the overall effect is of the moment, the vitality of life put to paper. He talks about this exhibition being about ‘mood’ and throughout the immediacy of the paintings adds to their atmospheric presence.
These elements are illustrated in ‘Children in the Sunshine, Flushing Beach’. Working on paper, there is lightness in the handling of paint. Thin washes of paint are overlaid with dabs and flicks, animating the whole surface. Previously working on board, the change in surface marks another shift. Tozer has reacted with looser brushwork, the overall finish becoming less literal, in some areas to the point of abstraction. In the creation of ‘mood’ Tozer has entered a more liberated realm in his application of paint. Talking about the collection Tozer says:
“These are studies that have become more about an emotional response to a place, I have concentrated on the mood of that moment. I think I am lucky in that I paint what is beautiful, I see a beautiful moment or place and I want to share it, hopefully something of that comes through in the work.”
Tozer has been hailed as the archetypal landscape painter. He is a great believer in the fundamentals of his craft – draughtsmanship, knowledge and being open to learn. What is exciting is that here is an artist who pays homage to the past yet keeps moving forward. A Modern British Painter to follow for a long time to come.
View Andrew Tozers Biography