London Lantern

Putting the Spotlight on London

Bruce Yardley at The Catto Gallery

05/05/2008, By

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The Catto Gallery is hosting their sixth solo exhibition of recent oil paintings by Bruce Yardley, from 8th until 26th June. The exhibition will feature recent views from New York, Venice and London viewed from the water, together with his home town of Bath. It is in these works that Yardley's brisk brushwork and mastery of shadow captures the atmosphere of each of these cities.

Impressionism is certainly the benchmark for Bruce Yardley's work and he follows the great tradition of the New English Art Club and such artists as Ken Howard and Bernard Dunstan. "Light and composition are the forces that make me paint", comments Bruce. The strength and beauty of any picture of note is the emphasis on the vertical and horizontal, and the structure of the work. Yardley expertly combines these key essential elements with a superb handling of light to create spatial illusion and a genuine sense of perspective perhaps inspired by the work of British Impressionist La Thangue.

His works captures the effects of light be they brilliant or subdued, with figures featuring prominently, either in the composition or as a focus. Following recent trips to France, Italy and the States, Yardley has, in his recent works, moved away from his favoured studies of figures and interior still-life studies.

He now focuses on cityscapes, as can be seen in his nocturnes of the Thames with Tower Bridge and the Houses of Parliament on the horizon and street scenes. Also in his street scenes, where Yardley gets under the skin of a city, be it the long shadows on ‘Cannaregio Fondamenta Della Sensa’, in Venice, hurrying pedestrians in a wet New York on ‘East 48th Street’, or the casual observation of ‘Christmas Decorations in Great Pulteney Street’ in Bath. Each work draws the viewer into them.

Yet figures are still an important part of the composition of Yardley’s paintings, be they highlighting the bustle of ‘Fifth Avenue’, or the contemplative air ‘In the Pump Room, Bath’. And in ‘Caroline, Turquoise and Gold’ the figure is once again the focus of the painting offering the viewer, an intimate moment with the subject.

‘To successfully capture the effects of light and mood requires perception supported, of course, by the ability to handle paint in a certain way. For Bruce Yardley, each painting is the result of a three-stage process, in which tone and texture are vital considerations. At all stages of the painting he is careful not to overstate anything. With this approach – the sensitive use of colour and tone, and the lively brushwork technique, like all good painters, Bruce leaves something to the viewer’s imagination.’ – Robin Capon, (Journalist for ‘The Artist’, which feature Bruce Yardley this month.)

Mrs Gillian Catto, owner and curator of The Catto Gallery, comments, ‘We are thrilled to welcome Bruce Yardley back to the gallery, and showcase his recent works for our collectors. Bruce’s handling of light and shadow immediately transports the viewer to the Grand Canal or offers them a ‘snapshot’ of the daily life of one of his favourite cities.’

For further information, images and a catalogue of the forthcoming Bruce Yardley exhibition, contact The Catto Gallery.

8th to 26th June
The Catto Gallery
100 Heath Street
London NW3 1DP
+44 (0)20 7435 6660

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