Lisa Wright: The Histories
7 August—23 October 2008
In the Gallery Café
Lisa Wright, Royal Blood, 2007. Oil on canvas 183x168 cms
In 2006 Lisa Wright was invited to be artist in residence at the Royal Shakespeare Company. The company was embarking on Michael Boyd's acclaimed production of the History Cycle – eight plays charting 100 years of English history with the same group of actors. This extraordinary ensemble project lasted two years. During that time, Wright attended the initial rehearsals in London and then at Stratford for sessions of intensive drawing.
In the book Lisa Wright: The Histories, writer Michael Bird describes how closely Wright came to feel involved in the process during rehearsals. "It’s evident, too, from the vitality and responsiveness of her line, ranging fluently through so many different kinds of mark and levels of pressure, that drawing lies at the heart of her work – its source and, I would say, its integral strength," he says.
"When the rehearsal period was over and the plays were ready for the stage, she could have stacked up her sketchbooks and declared the project complete. The paintings, in a sense, are another story. As they step into the spotlight, (the figures) emerge not from darkened recesses upstage but from the hours and layers of their creation in Wright’s studio."
Lisa Wright was born in Kent in 1965 and lives in works in Cornwall. During 1990-93 she was at the Royal Academy Schools (Postgraduate Diploma Painting). Since leaving the Royal Academy Schools in 1993, Wright has produced work centred on children – in the swimming pool, at the beach in twilight and nocturnal settings. In 2003 she won the Hunting Art Prize, in 2006 she was shortlisted for the first Sovereign European Art prize and in 2007 she was selected for ‘Art Now Cornwall’ at Tate St Ives. Lisa is a regular exhibitor in the Royal Academy Summer Exhibition.
- Copies of the hardback book Lisa Wright: The Histories (£10) are available in the Royal Academy Shop.