Painter's South Bank showcase
PUBLISHED: 14:54 10 September 2008 | UPDATED: 09:35 12 August 2010
A WATERCOLOURIST has wowed judges of a national competition, writes Kate Nelson. Artist June Berry, 84, of Chancery Lane, Beckenham, was highly commended along with three other painters in the Sunday Times Watercolour Competition earlier this month. T
A WATERCOLOURIST has wowed judges of a national competition, writes Kate Nelson.
Artist June Berry, 84, of Chancery Lane, Beckenham, was highly commended along with three other painters in the Sunday Times Watercolour Competition earlier this month.
The top 86 entries will be displayed at the Bankside Gallery, next to Tate Modern on London's South Bank, and, exceptionally, Mrs Berry will have two pieces on show. She said: "Only 86 paintings were chosen to be part of the exhibition from over 1,200 so I'm very pleased and honoured.
"Many of my paintings are influenced by my happy memories of childhood and nostalgia. I also live very close to Kelsey Park and am fascinated by the lake there and the wildlife like the Canada geese."
It was the lake which inspired Mrs Berry's Nightwalker painting, one of her highly commended pieces.
She said: "The park is always closed at night so I've never actually seen the lake in darkness. It is more like a dream and an invention from all the drawings I've done there over the years. I've seen it in many guises and I find it magical. There are lots of interesting shapes for paintings."
Mrs Berry and her husband, who is also an artist, spend more than half the year at a secluded cottage in Poitou, central France, which they bought when it was derelict 33 years ago.
She said: "It was a very poor area until after the war and still has quite a lot of vestiges of olden life. I take inspiration from how it was then and, of course, I am fascinated by the people and the way they live there.
"I have been painting my whole life, for as long as I can remember. I use oils as well as watercolours. Some things just feel right in one or the other. It's nice to change between them as well."
The watercolours will be on show at Bankside Gallery until September 21, from 11am to 6pm daily, with admission free. Most works are for sale.