Mark Brasington

Between worlds, the journey

To live here in the Aude between the high peaks of the Pyrenees and a windswept Mediterranean shore is to feel poised between two worlds.

I want to celebrate the enchantment of this place. My creative journey starts in a flowing watercolour style in direct response to the natural landscape but then moves on to bring that style to work on more mediated large canvases completed in the studio.

Nearly all the work in this show began life in front of particular places and at distinctive times of the year, many within walking distance of my studio in Pauligne. Here is my celebration of arid scrub escarpments and the geometric lines of the vines in this landscape so re-fashioned by human toil.

This sense of humanity in the landscape then led me to explore an apparently unlikely conjunction of railway and religious themes. I travel frequently by train to my teaching work and looking out of the carriage window on a private park near Castelnaudary, remembering frescoes by Giotto and Masaccio, I became lost in a vision of Eden and our mythical banishment from paradise. It struck me too that the moving world seen from the carriage window seemed a ready metaphor for the passage of time and the fleeting moments that form our lives, or the sense of all that passes.

Then there are the signs and traces of our grim histories. When faced with the physical reality of Adolf Eichmann, Hannah Arendt famously wrote of the “banality of evil”. That banality finds a poignant monument in the cattle truck at Bram station on the line to Toulouse, commemorating the quiet horror of the deportation of the Jews from here to Auschwitz. The focus of such horror in the seemingly everyday presence of a railway artefact inspired my painting The Massacre of the Innocents.

Even when we feel still we are always in motion. The world unfolds before us as we travel on, easily closed in and self-focused on our journey, but united by our common origins and destiny, not passengers but more or less distant brothers and sisters.

Mark Brasington was born in London in 1957. He studied Fine Art and the History of Art at Canterbury College of Art in England where we graduated in 1979.

He spent the following 20 years living and working as an artist in Italy. He now lives near Carcassonne in the South of France where he has established a painting studio.

He also teaches at the University of Toulouse 1 Capitole.

Paintings in public collections

Sous Préfecture, Ambert, France

Comune di Volterra, Italy

Via Crucis Convento di San Girolamo, Volterra, Italy

Comune di Pomarance, Italy

Mairie de Villedubert, Aude, France

Individual exhibitions

 1981  Caius College Gallery, Cambridge, England

1982  Galleria Boccaccio, Certaldo, Italy

1983   Drew Gallery, Canterbury, England

1984   Galleria A+A, Florence, Italy

1985   Canterbury Festival, England

1986   Palazzo Dei Priori, Volterra, Italy

1989   Via Crucis   Drew Gallery and St Peter’s Church, Canterbury, England

1991   The British Institute of Florence, Italy

1993   Le Porte della Città di Volterra   Drew Gallery, Canterbury, England

1994   Il Cammino   Chiesa di Sant’Antonio d’Abate,Volterra, Italy

1995   La Navigazione   Palazzo dei Priori, Volterra, Italy

1996   Avvistamenti  Palazzo dei Priori, Volterra, Italy

1997   Água Santi   Battistero di Volterra, Italy

1998    La Mairie, Ambert, France

1999   Aquarelles Moulin Richard de Bas, Ambert, France

2000   Chapelle Saint Dominique, Mende, France

2000   Navigatio Sancti Brandani Pinacoteca di Volterra, Italy

2001   Navigatio Sancti Brandani Moulin Richard de Bas, Ambert, France

2004  Abbaye de Caunes Minervois, France

2007  Espace Gibert, Lezignan Corbières, France

2007   Pinacoteca di Volterra, Italy

2009   Paraty, Brazil

2009   Universty of Toulouse

Contact and links

my cinema blog

my brother Paul


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