Interview for intersilient by Karen Parker with artist Bryan B. Kelly.
Artist Bryan B. Kelly moved his home to the village of Willoughby in Warwickshire intending to move his studio to this idyllic setting too. The property already had an ideal building in the garden, which offered the perfect solution, and with some planning, insulation, paint and redesign of the lighting the building was ready to become a working studio. This was finished just as the Covid-19 lockdown was announced in March 2020 and so Bryan now had no excuse, but to settle down to painting again after a few months without palette and brush in hand.
Bryan’s work is a flight of fancy, where his landscapes and interiors are instantly recognisable for what they are. However, the choice of colour, the shape of the trees, the detail of the natural world, and the perspective, play tricks and we are transported to a place reminiscent of poet A.E. Houseman’s “blue remembered hills”
What are those blue remembered hills
What spires, what farms are those?Blue Remembered Hills A.E. Houseman
A nostalgia for a place in Bryan’s imagination that chimes in with our own memories of the wonderful summers of childhood, of family gatherings and of home. Bryan adds a note of surprise, or of wonder, or a question is posed with his tiny additions somewhere on the canvas of a flower upright or drooping, a bird, endless gates to access field upon field in a broad sweep of countryside, an enchanted house in a forest, or a surreal interior with strange trees growing in strange places. Bryan is influenced by his native Ireland, and in this filmed interview he relates how he came from being a ceramicist in England, to discovering a talent for painting that he had no idea he possessed, on his return to Bunclody, County Wexford, Ireland.
Intrigued by how the coronavirus lockdown and the delight of a new space to work has impacted on Bryan’s work, this interview with Bryan asks those questions and we have an insight into his philosophy and practice. Bryan also talks of his delight at exhibiting at the Royal Academy Summer Exhibition in 2018 and his views of the future for himself and the Art community as a whole.
Bryan mentions Lockdown, his first completed painting in the new studio under Covid-19 conditions, which is currently being framed, but here is an insight to how the work evolved.
It is obvious that the new surroundings back in England in the beautiful Warwickshire countryside are proving a brilliant stimulus to the painting with two new works in the studio on the day of the interview, both can be seen here below and progress of them will be available on Bryan’s website along with the complete collection of his work.