Dawn Crothers has been a staple in the Northern Ireland art scene for the past 12 years and has been working on her next compelling exhibition entitled ‘Clowns of the Sea, Rathlin’ which will take place at her gallery and studio on Friday 15th November from 7pm.
The show was the product of various family visits to Rathlin Island over the past 2 years which inspired her to look at the wildlife and inhabitants and produce a number of oil paintings from her studio based in Belfast in an historic stable building on Lismachan Estate, in the Glenmachan area.
Her family home is within walking distance of her studio, where she lives with her husband and two sons. From childhood Dawn was a bit of a day dreamer spending many days drawing and making things. Mostly sketching animals, when she was growing up, she wanted to be veterinary nurse, often bringing home injured animals to her Mothers despair, from stray dogs to wounded birds in shoe boxes. She generally has a love for nature and the outdoors. Her happiest memories running freely around her family caravan sites, in Northern Ireland’s magical seaside towns and countryside.
She enjoyed Studying Fine Art at the University of Ulster but decided to leave early as she started selling her paintings in a local gallery. As a result, she would describe herself as a self-taught painter and in many ways feels this helped her create her own style early on. Marc Chagall has had the greatest influence on her and her work. In high school she came across a Marc Chagall book in the library. For Dawn her art career started the moment she caught glimpse of his bold and colourful brush strokes and fantasy themed work. It was an instant connection; she adored his beautiful dream like paintings. From then on, she knew her life would involve in art someway.
Dawn’s medium of choice is oil on canvas, depending on what the subject is she may use different techniques. For example, her famous Snail paintings are created using paints straight from the tubes applied thickly and haphazardly, using quick movements, blending colour and texture together to create the desired effect. Other works are started by sketching with charcoal on the canvas firstly then applying the paint in gentle layers using paint from her palette. Working from photographs and drawings made from life or her imagination.
Dawn was one of the few lucky Irish artists to hit the ground running in the early days of her career. With her first solo exhibition in October 2008 being such a massive ‘sell-out’ success, she quickly established herself as a household name in Northern Ireland. In fact, as Dawn’s popularity has grown her impact on a much higher level is starting to be felt. Now, it seems every one of her finished paintings naturally achieves collector status.
All of Dawn’s paintings reflect her personality with their bubbly and approachable attributes. She wants people to relish in the many humorous characters and scenes she brings to life and hopes that the viewer sees the emotion she portrays in her work. Most of all she wants people to feel happy looking at her paintings and to feel the light-hearted side to life.
Dawn’s Solo Exhibition entitled ‘Clown’s of the Sea, Rathlin’ will take place at her gallery studio based at 378a Belmont Road, Belfast, BT4 2NF on Friday 15th November 2019 from 7pm to 9.30pm. Feel free to come along and see her next amazing collection of paintings!
More details can be found on her website and social media pages www.dawncrothers.com and Facebook and Insta @dawncrothersartist