I see that most of your work is representational. Are there any reasons for this?

I started painting representationally mostly to prove to myself that I could make paint do what I intended it to. Making a representation of something seemed a worthwhile test. And I’ve never stopped. I find I am particularly interested in images – especially images with an implied narrative. Edward Hopper and Paula Rego are artists whose work I love for that reason. I want an image that makes me wonder what’s happened or what’s going to. That’s the start. Visually I am also particularly interested in colour and pattern, so I try to fit the idea and the image within a colour and pattern context that I like.

Marcia Gillespie

How do you work?

I normally start with my camera, and use it as a sketchbook. I never try to take formal photographs, but rather collect things, and then go back to my studio to review what I have. I am normally interested in places with buildings and people in them, and also with places that have a past. I like speculating on the humans who built and used our cities, and who are using them now. I never try to recreate a photograph. In all cases I find that the hand has to learn an image before it can make a painting, and so I do lots of studies of the subjects I have. Printmaking is interesting because there is a level of indirection implicit in the practice, and I enjoy that, and have used printmaking for exploring particular areas and approaches. Keeping painting direct and immediate is work, and takes effort and concentration. The problem for me is knowing when to stop – usually before I think I’ve finished.

Where is your work going next?

I’m continuing with my pictures of the New York underground because I find that’s an area that I continue to be fascinated by, and I regularly go back to collect more data. At the moment, I’m also trying to figure out how to respond to my own environment – which is a rural landscape, not the city, and am working with landscape and some level of abstraction. I am finding this a challenge. I have been looking at Kandinsky’s early work at Murnau which I love to get some inspiration for this.



Marcia Gillespie Marcia Gillespie Marcia Gillespie Marcia Gillespie



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