An Interview with Christian Marsh

Plus One Gallery
Jun 28, 2017 1:34PM

With his solo show in  full swing, we take a look at what influences his practice and why  painting the places he has been is so important to him.

'Ocean Drive, South Beach, Miami', Oil on canvas, 120 x 250 cm

What is your artistic process/ How do you work?

Once I have the reference material, which involves taking numerous  photographs of the subject, a final image is determined. Then a basic  outline of the composition is transferred to the canvas with the aid of a  projector. Every painting is different in terms of where I begin.  If  there is a definitive sky line then I may roughly block in areas of  colour, with every layer of colour I usually add more detail and more  definition, until I am happy with the end result.

What’s integral to the work of an artist?

Self-belief, passion and determination.


When did you begin painting? Did you study art at degree level?

Painting is something that I have always done, although it was  originally watercolors. Oil paint gave me more freedom and amazing  depth. I studied at the University of Wolverhampton, gaining a BA in  Illustration and then went on to complete a Master’s degree.


Has your work changed since your early days? How has your work evolved?

With every new painting my work evolves naturally, new subjects, new  ideas and new techniques adding subtler narratives that open to the  audience

'The Girl at the Dancing Fountains', Nice, Oil on canvas, 140 x 100 cm

The digital camera brought many changes and opportunities in the way  hyperrealist artists work. As technology keeps evolving, do you see any  new “tool” making such an impact as the digital camera had?

Technology will always offer something new, so who knows?  The  digital camera enabled me to capture a snapshot of a fleeting moment and  to me, that is the most important thing.


Who is your favorite artist and why?

Claude Monet. My two favourite paintings are The Magpie and the  Church at Varengeville. Both have an amazing sense of light and to me  are very evocative.


It has been said that you include human presence in your  cityscapes to add an emotive quality or a narrative. Can you tell us a  bit about this?

The inclusion of a human presence and subtle narrative is important  for the overall atmosphere of the location, as well as inviting  interaction with the viewer to speculate on their activity.

a‘Kings Park, Perth’, Oil on canvas, 70 x 170 cm                                       ‘Primrose’, Oil on canvas , 90 x 150 cm

Your paintings usually depict a bright and sunny day, rather than a miserable rainy day. Is there a reason for this alacrity?

The treatment of light is different in every country and my aim is to  capture that. Light adds more interest, clarity and helps describe  surfaces and textures. I wouldn’t rule out a miserable rainy day, if the  right idea came along.


Do the cities you paint fit around your travels or does your work determine where you travel to?

Both. Usually I have a preconceived idea of the general backdrop that  interests me. It’s always good idea to have a camera at the ready!


What have you been working on at the moment?

My latest painting is set in Cannes, France and it includes a yacht  called Altair at the Panerai classic yacht challenge. It was interesting  to see the communication between the crew and the dedication in keeping  the yachts in such immaculate condition. It was an extremely detailed  and complicated subject and has been the longest painting I have worked  on, although I am very happy with end result.

'Rialto Bridge, Venice', Oil on canvas, 190cm x 140cm      |      'Nelson's View', Oil on canvas, 130 x 100 cm

You can view the full interview with Marsh HERE

(p. 65 - 67)

Plus One Gallery