OUR picture choice this week takes us back to Oxfordshire and the striking work of artist and printmaker Jane Peart.
Born in London, Jane graduated from the Ealing School of Art and worked in a design studio before moving to Oxford in 1978.
An avid printmaker, her work ranges from colourful acrylics to stunning etchings of birds and animals.
She has been exhibited all over the country and is a member of the Oxford Printmaker’s Cooperative and Oxford Art Society.
She says: “After many years of devoting my time to pencil and pen and ink drawings, I took up etching, which I love, although it is a very challenging and demanding medium. I now devote most of my creative energies to printmaking.”
However her online exhibition this year shows off some of the paintings she has completed during lockdown.
“I have found it difficult this last year to produce any new etchings but I’ve enjoyed doing some different work,” she says. “Some of the paintings are from walks I’ve been on during lockdown. It’s opened my eyes to the beautiful scenery walking through the woods or by the river.”
Her pictures stray much further afield too, from the Pyrenees to Tuscany and even China. A flipbook accessible online contains more than 50 examples of her work.
“For as long as I can remember I have always loved drawing,” she says. “My etchings have always been about trying to evoke the feel and atmosphere of the place that inspires me. When drawing animals and birds I strive to capture their character, endeavouring to show the texture of their fur, feathers and other aspects which make them unique.
“In recent times I have taken up painting in acrylics. One good thing about the lockdown has been the opportunity to work in another medium and discover new exciting things to do and I really love it!”
Many of the other artists exhibitiing at this year’s festival have had their work featured in past Beyonder features, including Katie Cannon, Jane Duff, Maureen Gillespie and Sue Side, with local landscapes proving perennially popular subjects.
Traditionally May is the month that artists across Oxfordshire open their doors to the public.
The Spring Show is a seasonal collection celebrating the natural world as it awakens, awash with vivid greens, blues and golden yellows, hares and songbirds, blooms and blossom. It offers a sneak preview of what’s on offer through May, when more than 650 artists show off their creative talents.
Despite lockdown restrictions, this year there will still be dozens of secure pop-up galleries and studio exhibitions to visit across the county, with another 500 available online.