Patsy McArthur is a Scottish figurative artist based in Brighton who explores the grace and power of movement through her naturalistic drawings and paintings.
Drawing has been at the forefront of artist Patsy McArthur’s practice since her student days and continues to play a crucial role. Brighton based artist, Patsy enjoys the directness and finds that the monochrome work serves to strip the image down, without the distraction and seduction of colour.
Patsy states how she has was surrounded by the long tradition of Scottish figurative painting and was blown away by the work of the “New Glasgow Boys” from the 80s /early 90s when she was a teenager. Patsy describes it as ‘raw and, in your face, and very human.’ Figurative painting appealed to Patsy more than any other type of art – ‘I saw the power it had to connect emotionally – at a human level.’
This, combined with the rigorous training in life drawing that she had at Scottish art schools meant that Patsy had the observational drawing skills to really develop her work in realism. Patsy has made realist figurative work ever since and continues to push her draftsmanship as far as she can.
The aim of artist Patsy McArthur’s work is to provoke an emotional response whether that be power, freedom, strength or control (or lack if it). Patsy uses a particular imagery in order to try to achieve that. There’s a beauty and a grace in this type of imagery for artist Patsy McArthur. She finds it interesting that images can have such a power over us emotionally and as an artist one can manipulate that in any which way.
“I’m trying to make really contemporary, emotional drawings which have as much to do with us as humans as they do with horses; we see ourselves in them. The imagery of leaping joyously, straining to clear an invisible fence, spooking or swerving all seem to translate into our human experience so well and by keeping the images monochrome and free of background context, focus one on the content. They are highly rendered drawings describing snapshots of movement in timeless black and white.” – Patsy McArthur.