Forge Flower Power

Northumberland has never failed to produce innovative artists and crafts people over the years and October’s solo exhibition at Allendale Forge Studios features a young woman influenced greatly by the vibrant colours of the world around her.

Nicola Mazel, from Haydon Bridge, has a small studio in her garden where she paints. She trained at the renowned Glasgow School of Art and revels in colours that surround her, especially in plants and flowers.

She explained: “As I go through my day-to- day life, little snippets and colour combinations I see in the environment strike me as particularly pleasing. In my paintings I try to capture these colours - sometimes from memory, but usually through direct observation.

“My interest in matching the pigments in my palette to very specific and subtle colours in my environment has challenged me to explore paint mixing in a systematic way. I have made my own colour charts and testers, which have become invaluable reference tools for capturing the particular colours that excite me.

“I love the way textures and patterns can draw the eye to focus on specific colours and I have discovered that I can condense all the colours I have selected from the space around me onto one page.” she added.

Nicola cites the work of modern painters like Henri Matisse and Richard Diebenkorn as her inspiration. Ultimately she hopes to transfer the colour combinations she loves onto papers and fabrics to encourage the observer’s eye to follow various directions through colour, shape and symbolism.

The exhibition at the Allendale Forge Studios will run the entire month of October.

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