Posted 22nd December 2019
Meet... Anja Percival and Tim Southall
In the last blog of the series, we are featuring the works of Anja Percival and Tim Southall, whose warm and light-filled prints are available to view and buy in our current Watts Contemporary exhibition, In Print: Capturing Light (on until 5 January).
Tim Southall is a graduate of the Royal College of Art and L'école des Beaux Arts, Paris. For many years he has split his time between the countryside of Cadiz Province in southern Spain, where he makes much of his work, and Birmingham, where he is a member of Birmingham Printmakers.
Tim's aim is to explore a range of subjects that are familiar, and to find something new and interesting to say about them. His instinctive and emotional approach to his work allows him to make images that show a lightness of touch along with an eye for detail and nuance.
'Historically, light has always been an integral component in making art. It is the key to creating the illusion of three dimensions on a two-dimensional plane. Without light, imagery is flat. As a figurative artist, light is key to the work I make, creating the atmosphere and depth of emotion I strive to achieve. In much of my work I look to capture special, fleeting moments, whether it be a transitory encounter or incident, or an emotional response between the art and the viewer. In doing this, often the light is the unnoticed supporting subject of the image, as in the etching Coming Home. Although the man and dog are the ones coming home, the image is defined by the light of the dying sun at the end of the day, creating or emphasising the warm emotional ties that are embedded in Coming Home.'
After initially pursuing a scientific career, Anja then studied Fine Art at Falmouth College of Art, where she discovered her love for printmaking. She spent several years in Denmark before relocating back to the North East in 2009; she has her own studio in Fowlers Yard, Durham.
In 2010 she was named Printmaker of the Year at Printfest, and has exhibited widely both nationally and internationally. In 2012 her work was selected to hang in the newly refurbished Millbank House, within the House of Lords. In recent years she has participated in the International Print Biennale with a solo show in her own studio, in association with Northern Print, and won the Visitor's Choice Award at the 2019 Printfest in Ulverston.
'I am fascinated by the different atmospheres that light creates in our environment. I specialise in copperplate etching, using wax resist on aquatint. My etchings are all hand-drawn, I do not use any photographic or digital techniques; I work directly onto the copper plate with a wax pencil.
My colour palette is relatively subdued… I feel that strong colour would detract the attention from the subtle tonal variations within my imagery. I frequently focus on spaces that do not include the human figure. My choice of subject matter is usually quite ordinary - the inside of my own home, or the scenery I pass daily on the way the work- but it's the effect that light has within these spaces that captures my attention. Infiltrating transient sunshine can suddenly transform a space, filling it with energy and highlighting surface form and texture. I find it really interesting to see light changing the unremarkable to the remarkable, revealing a whole new level of visual stimuli.'
Interested in seeing Anja Percival and Tim Southall's works in person? Click here to find out more about In Print: Capturing Light. All works for sale.
Banner image: Anja Percival,
Window Light XIX