The John Ruskin Prize 2014
‘Recording Britain Now’
(Winner to be announced June 27th 2014)
Millenium Gallery


Artwave West
11th April 24th May 2014

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“That’s Not What”
February 2014

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“Swimming Against The Tide”
27th September-20th October 2013

Winner of The Door Prize For Painting, March 2012, www.thedoorprize.co.uk

Solo show with
Lab 610 De Faveri Contemporary Art Gallery,  Sovramonte, Italy. www.defaveriarte.it
“Nurtured Landscape” runs from the 14th April to 13th May 2012.

Sonia Stanyard
By Kristy Gosling, Fine Art Photographer.

Initially these works appear to be first and foremost engaged with process, and almost incidentally referencing nature and the landscape.  That is not to say that they are un-considered as there exists in all these pieces thoughtfulness played out through beautifully muted palettes and a depth of field which is surprisingly photographic. More that, inherent in these works is a playfulness, an innocent experimentation with the medium, as though the forms exist primarily to draw parallels between the way that paint behaves in response to forces such as gravity or liquidity and for example the manner in which a tree grows, or a mist moves over lowlands.

Then comes the realisation that these paintings operate in a unique space between realism and abstraction, there is a curious dualism here, any hints of realism are immediately denied, undermined by brave and sweeping revelations of the mediums characteristics, dripping paint or brushstrokes in a background wash.  There is an unmistakable essence of the self-consciousness of the artist about them, which can be perceived as modesty, honesty.  
The motives for this kind of work are naturally complex and deeply personal and it is perhaps eloquent that peripheries and inaccessible places feature frequently. 

News Continued:

Artwave West, Dorset www.artwavewest.com
June 2012 dates to be announced

Shortlisted for The Door Art Prize 2012, exhibition March 2012,
Centrespace Gallery, Bristol www.thedoorprize.co.uk

Shortlisted for The Open West 2012, exhibition 3rd to 31st March 2012, Gloucester Cathedral, Gloucester wwwtheopenwest.org.uk

Previous Shows:

Sonia Stanyard and Amy Albright
By Martin Goold

...Subtle and delicate shifts of colour, calm expanses of reflected light or deeply glowing twilight atmospheres, characterise Stanyard’s moving and quietly contemplative landscape paintings. Reference points in the landscape, a tree, a bridge, a window, are caught between materialising and dissolving, and precise detail and definition melt away into diffusion. These veiled visions that float as if in a dream might be seen as melancholic, but in this stillness a profoundly poetic, optimistic connection with both the power and the fragility of the natural world is made.

Far more than specific identifiable places, these softly evocative landscapes emerge out of a composite of Stanyard’s experiences. Violet Lodge for example refers to her travels in 2007 through vast and deserted American landscapes, finding abandoned semi-derelict cabins in the woods that inspired a variety of ambiguous interpretations: forlorn, secret, magical. The weathered peeling surfaces of these rudimentary structures opened up numerous painterly possibilities. Stanyard has worked from this subject several times but this latest version is full of a new spirit of discovery, as if familiarity with the motif has allowed her to enrich and revitalise the painting process. In Colony the misted, mountainous space is accented by a lush, almost Amazonian, section in the lower right of the painting; Stanyard was reading Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness at the time and the title of the painting references this trajectory of influence. A more constant motivating force throughout her work comes from the sublime qualities in Russian and Scandinavian art and the Romanticism of Caspar David Freidrich, as well as from the expressive power of abstraction, Mark Rothko in particular.

These examples typify an approach that deliberately avoids location sketches or photographs in favour of written notes that capture the emotive responses to places, and where the ensuing activity of painting has a life of its own. In the studio she floods the surface with translucent fluid paint, tilting the canvas to make coloured diffusions, carefully controlling the unfolding activity, and delicately accentuating suggestions. The original subject remains important but by the time the work is completed and titled it is merely a delicate thread connecting to a new lyricism that has emerged through the liberty of the painting itself...

Sonia Stanyard and Amy Albright runs 16 March – 09 April at Artwave West Gallery, Morcombelake, Dorset, DT6 6DY. Telephone: +44 (0) 1297 489746. Open Wednesday-Saturday 10am – 4pm and at other times by appointment.

Sonia Stanyard, born 1973, Yorkshire. Lives and works in London.

BA hons Fine Art, Southampton


Waterhouse & Dodd, Group Show, Cork Street, London, 2006

Redmill Gallery, Group Show, Vermont, USA, 2007

International Art Prize, Paul Barr, Chelsea, New York, 2008

“Art of Ideas”, Curated by Stephen Snoddy, Baskerville House, Birmingham, 2009

Four Square Fine Arts, Group Show, Lewes, East Sussex, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010

Artwave West, Group Show, Dorset, 2009, 2010

Art London, Chelsea, London, 2009, 2010

Basel Art Fair,  Switzerland, Waterhouse & Dodd,  June 2011

Nature Matters,  Four Square Fine Arts,  Ditchling,  East Sussex,  August/September 2011

Art Verona, Italy, De Faveri Contemporary Art, October 2011


“National Open”, Festival Hall, Chichester, November 2008

“Artsway Open”, Contemporary Art in the New Forest, Sway, Hampshire, December 2008 – February 2009

“Surface Gallery Open Show”, Surface Gallery, Nottingham, July 2010

“Lynn Painter Stainers Award”, Painters Hall, London, November 2010
Arte Leguna, Venice, Italy. Special Award Winner 2011

Salon Art Prize, Matt Roberts Gallery, Vyner Street, London.  Finalist 2011

The Door Prize For Painting, Centrespace Gallery, Bristol. Finalist 17th – 28th March 2012 www.thedoorprize.co.uk



Scholarship award to paint at the Vermont Studio Centre, October 2007

National Lottery Award for research and travel, 2007


Chris Abani, Author, Los Angeles, USA

Southlands Hospital, Worthing, Sussex, 2 Public Art Pieces

Various private collections