10 June 2011

Visionary art in Cornwall - Tom Paddle

I have a ritual when it comes to my own birthday; I like to be on the road. Generally, I think that a birthday, for various reasons, practical as philosophical, is an event which is best not to talk about, which should be quickly erased from ones memory. This year we had planned to go to Florence, Tuscany, but we ended up in Cornwall, South West England, instead. It was absolutely beautiful, very windy, wild, historical and highly artistic. We stayed in the Artist Residence Hotel  in Penzance which was run by artists. The staff was extremely friendly. - I sincerely recommend it.

We decided to devote the last day to the arts. Within the framework of Cornwall Open Studios, we visited two group exhibition in West Cornwall, and one individual studio in Mid Cornwall.  The last studio that we visited was an unusual one. From a list of two hundred and five artists and craftspeople, I wanted to see this the most. Why? Because it was the studio of a visionary artist. This was the only visionary painter I could find in the whole catalogue. And so it happened that we went to Sunnyside Cottage in Trescoll, Lockengate, close to the Eden Project. There we met Tom Paddle.
 Tom Paddle is a remarkable person, not unusual for someone from the peace-happiness-flower-power-generation. He told us that he has always been immersed in the study and practices of paganism and the occult – gods and goddesses, mythology and folklore. He is surrounded by a magical, beautiful nature.
My art is my life. Everything I paint is a reflection of my surroundings in the beautiful Cornish countryside. My inspiration comes from looking for shapes and patterns in nature however mundane. Similarly, when I paint, I allow images to emerge from the random patterns on a semi-blank canvas and have always found the practice similar to "automatic writing" of psychics
He is also a naturalist and herbalist. He spends much of his time in the woods. He is also a trout and sea trout fisherman. He is a very diverse person. He is also known as a musician playing Celtic folk and mediaeval music, and he has a collection of historical instruments. He also writes poetry and fiction and performs as a storyteller with a gang of bawdy puppets. Woo, he is a real Renaissance Man.

Back to his art; he is a very good craftsman, an excellent one. Personally, I am not a big fan of visionary art. I find that lots of art works that belong to or are classified as visionary art are very kitschy and “cheap”. In contrast to the surrealists, they tend to be rather serious and lacking in humour. There is no place for playful idiocy. However, I have to admit that I really like most of Tom’s paintings. The majority of his paintings are created in acrylics or water color crayons or a mixture. He paints lots of visionary landscapes, scenes and gods/goddesses, and other creatures from diverse mythologies, the early history of our planet and folklore. His technical skills are excellent. For myself, I love his portraits, faces of the goddesses, spirits of nature, shamans and other creatures. They are really magical. We bought a print of one of his visionary portraits; Woodspirit. Here is the image of this work.

Woodspirit by Tom Paddle

I think he is a good portraitist. But decide for yourself, here are two other images of Tom's paintings, the one I liked.

Puck - Woodland God

Pneuma - The Breath of Life

Here is the link to his website with diverse work: http://www.tompaddleart.co.uk


buy viagra pills said...

firend.. you have a wonderful talents.. really marvellous.. its awesome.. thanks for the post of this beautiful painting..

Sean Miller said...

This is some pretty awesome stuff. Thanks for the post.