Ask The Artist

Eleanor Bartlett is a UK-based painter who specialises in the use of tar and metal paint. Her works utilise block textures and colours in solid forms.

A: You recently exhibited your work in the Tintype Gallery in London – with the breadth of work in your Tar Painting series, how did you prepare for the solo show?

EB: The paintings I make with tar have a visceral immediacy. I wanted the scream of materiality to be heard as soon as you entered the gallery. The space is quite contained so the show had to be spare yet full with a rhythmical coherency to underline the urgency and insistence of the subject matter.

I chose paintings which described form in pitch black , interspersed with more delicate small paintings, with a last minute addition in the strange gallery alcove. In the end it was a combination of pre-planning, intuition and surprise.

1. Eleanor Bartlett, Untitled No.55, 2017. Tar and metal paint on canvas, 110cm x 112cm.