Inspired by the ways in which we experience nature, Caroline Underwood evokes different natural phenomena through her art. Executed in a diverse range of techniques, her work recalls universally familiar, albeit specific moments spent outdoors. She focuses on the meditative and restorative potential of these moments, emphasizing them through the use of chiaroscuro in an almost abstract manner.
The first impression Caroline’s art leaves is the absence of colour. This dedication to the monochromatic is deliberate, supporting the exploration of tonal contrasts in a world dressed only in light. Shapes and forms of natural elements are treated as a background, while the artist explores the intensity of illumination falling on birch trees, snow or breaking through branches. At times, she treats the canvas nearly as an overexposed photograph, while in other moments the lines are clean, sharp and the darker hues prevail.
Employing a diverse range of techniques across the various disciplines of drawing, painting, printmaking and digital media, her studio practice contrasts and combines traditional and experimental processes. Regardless of the method or medium, the work she creates consistently provokes a range of emotions in the observer, who is compelled to absorb a part of the represented experience. We are transported into a meditative state where we can recognize and empathize with the artist’s reactions to landscapes, urban structures or memories. A small figure of a man or a bird is something to identify with, while we ponder on the impressiveness of the great outdoors.
Crispy Morning, Acrylic and spray paint on canvas
Caroline Underwood graduated with a BA Hons in Fine Art from Chelsea College of Art in 2003. She completed teacher training at the London Arts Consortium in 2004 and an MA in Fine Art at City & Guilds of London Art School in 2007. In 2009-2010 she was artist-in-residence at University for the Creative Arts as part of the Artists Access to Art Colleges scheme. She completed an art education research residency at the Centre for Arts and Learning, Goldsmiths, University of London in 2013.
Alongside her fine art studio practice, Caroline has been teaching and working with adults and children of all ages to develop educational, collaborative and community arts projects since 2004.
She spends most of her time at her “spiritual home” on the Isle of Wight wholly enjoying the inspiring open spaces.
View and purchase available works by Caroline Underwood here.