Natalie Dowse

I work from the close examination of the photographic image or extracted film still, derived from the surveillance, documentation and scrutiny of various locations. Carefully selected resource material is either used in isolation, in sequence or spliced together to make fictional scenarios, which form the basis of paintings, drawings, installations and video.

The impression of the split-second moment captured in time is often accentuated by the composition and framing of the snapshot, whether real or digitally manipulated, questioning the validity and truth of the lens-based image. By using these photographic sources, I am elevating the status of the original image by drawing on the considered value and the historic eminence of painting and image production.

The work often appears soft, blurred, degraded and out-of-focus alluding to the original photographic source, but at the same time firmly employing the language of paint through the physicality of the medium, with emphasis on exaggerated contrast, heightened colour and the brush stroke.

The paintings are often produced in series and are presented as stand-alone works, or placed in sequences that are arranged in seemingly random configurations. These construct alternative narratives and acknowledge and mark moments that are irrevocably in the past.

Natalie Dowse lives and works in Portsmouth and has exhibited her work nationally and internationally. Her work is in public and private collections, including the Jonathan Vickers Collection, the Robert Priseman Collection at Falmouth Art Gallery and the Priseman-Seabrook Collection. Her work is also featured on the BBC’s Your Paintings website of the UK National Collection.

Natalie was the recipient of the Jonathan Vickers Fine Art Award, a year-long residential project which culminated in her solo show Skimming the Surface at Derby Museum and Art Gallery. She was awarded an international residency to Riga, Latvia, by the Arts Council England International Fellowship programme in partnership with Braziers International Artists’ Workshops. Natalie is a graduate of Falmouth School of Art (BA Fine Art) and the University of Portsmouth (MA Fine Art). She is also an artist member and board member of Contemporary British Painting.

artist’s website