“The word ‘The Artist’s Studio’ conjure up an image of a space where creativity and it’s attendant ideas can be fleshed out and made visible.
My own paintings can reflect the studio in a literal manner. For instance the way the light falls across a canvas can act as a prompt for the construction of the image. At the same time, it is somewhere that allows concentration on the painting to the exclusion of everything else, and to bring together the myriad number of small ideas and images that contribute to the final outcome.
Other artists have been equally affected by the space they create in; the Belgian painter Ensor, whilst working on his painting, Christ’s Entry into Brussels, had to unroll and re-roll the canvas as he painted it, as the room was not large enough for him to work on his spread out. He therefore only saw the whole painting when he left it completed and took it outside. The sculptor Brancusi in his later years spent the majority of his time rearranging his work within his studio in order to let the light affect and influence his impressions of his work.”
John Monks about his exposition “The Studio”, London, 2019
It often seems that the success or failure of an individual work occurs when the original idea becomes exhausted. At this point, the painting moves into an arena where the solution is provided by what exists on the canvas, rather than what was originally envisaged. It is this pursuit of the marriage of accident and intent that continues to inspire and drive the effort to produce new work.
My influences range from Velázquez to Cy Twombly. I am drawn to artists who see the world through the language of representation, but at the same time acknowledge and use the physicality of the medium of paint.”
John Monks about his exposition “Mirror Image”, London, May 2017.