01608 664411 info@thestourgallery.co.uk

ABOVE JK138 (16) The leap of water oil on wood panel 58x58cm - SOLD
  • LEFT JK132 (10) Foula glimpsed, Dale of Walls oil on canvas and board 40x40cm
  • MIDDLE JK134 (12) Bight of Laward I, Grutness oil on wood panel 21x29cm
  • RIGHT JK135(13) Bight of Laward II, Grutness oil on wood panel 20x29cm
  • LEFT JK140 (18) Just a glance - view from the studio oil on wood panel 50x50cm - SOLD
  • MIDDLE JK141 (19) Wind - moderate to rough oil on wood panel 20x28cm - SOLD
  • RIGHT JK142 (20) South-easterly wind, with squally showers, Grutness oil on wood panel 40x40cm - SOLD
  • LEFT JK144 (22) Slow drifting curtain of rain, Stennes 20x30cm
  • MIDDLE JK145 (23) Slipping away, Grutness Voe 21x29cm
  • RIGHT JK147 (25) Lone Tirrick, Dale of Walls 33x32cm
  • LEFT JK150 (28) Spume and spindrift 56x120cm
  • MIDDLE JK153 (31) Fishing in a stumba mixed media on fabriano 66x142cm - SOLD
  • RIGHT JK154 (32) Fall charcoal and graphite on paper 84x122cm
  • LEFT JK156 (35) Moving fast Silwick oil on wood panel 24x30cm
  • MIDDLE JK157 (36) Rain an sea fog over Silwick Stacks oil on wood panel 33.5x32.5cm - SOLD
  • RIGHT JK160 (40) Blowing hard across the Voe of Dale 40x40cm - SOLD
  • LEFT JK164 (34) Morning mist lifting, Brindister oil on board 50x50cm - SOLD

Janette Kerr

Over 40 paintings will be available


Janette Kerr is a land and seascape painter. She exhibits widely throughout the UK, and was elected as an RWA Academician in 2003. In 2011 she was elected President of the RWA. (Royal West of England Academy.)

Awarded The David Murray Studentship for Landscape Studies by the Royal Academy Schools in 1999, in the same year she also took part in a group project In House during Bath Fringe Festival, making and installing night works in two domestic houses. She has worked as resident artist in the UK, Southern Ireland, and Italy.

In 2004 Kerr completed a practice-based PhD concerning the depiction of night landscape. Whilst led by her practice,
(the original impetus stemming from her practice of walking and making drawings at night), the theoretical research has
had an impact upon her painting. The recognition of an inherited visual language has both informed and helped to define
the work, placing her ‘within a process of tradition in which past and present are constantly fused'.

The practice of making paintings

My paintings represent immediate responses to sound and silences within the landscape around me; they are about movement and the rhythms of sea and wind, swelling and breaking waves, the merging of spray with air, advancing rain and mist, glancing sunlight - elements that seem to be about something intangible.

Kerr is not somebody who makes meticulous studies of landscape. Beyond mere topography, but with a nod towards the Romantic tradition in landscape painting, her practice remains contemporary and experimental. Delighting in sudden and unpredictable changes in the weather, she is very much a painter of the British landscape - a foul-weather painter who enjoys being out in, and working from the landscape when it’s dark and wet. Charcoal drawings and small paintings made on-site become the basis for larger work on canvas painted in the studio.

Kerr’s current preoccupation with the sea has taken her from the coasts of South Wales and Dorset (where she grew up), to the Isle of Skye, Northumbria, and the Ring of Kerry, Ireland. During 2006 and 2008, Kerr was a resident artist at the Cill Rialaig International Art Centre, situated on a small wild and windy peninsula on the edge of the sea in the Ring of Kerry, S Ireland. 2009 found her working on Shetland as a resident artist. Regular trips to the islands of Skye and Lewis and to Southern Ireland fuel and reinvigorate her work - time spent walking and absorbing - making drawings and paintings which are then worked with in her studio.

The paintings in this exhibition result from her Shetland residency and residences on the west coast of Ireland.  The Shetland work is her first to use mixed media and figurative representation.

60 DEGREES NORTH by BRIAN FALLON, 2012, Chief Critic of The Irish Times for 35 years and Literary Editor (1977-1988)

“JANETTE KERR, in my estimation, is the best painter of the sea in these islands, and I say this with no risk of hyperbole.  She is not a ‘marine painter’ in the traditional sense – a very honourable tradition too, running from the eighteenth century on to men such as Clarkson Stanfield, Napier Hemy and William Wyllie, and producing in the twentieth a major figure in Montague Dawson.  Many or most of these painters were sailors, or at least ardent yachtsmen; Turner, too intimately knew the sea as seen and felt from the swaying deck of a boat.  Janette Kerr has intended to paint more from the shore – very often a rocky or precipitous shore, and from a vantage point which may become an actual danger zone in stormy weather.  However, she does not shun the open sea and has developed a intense, even scientific interest in wave formation, studying it at first hand and consulting with professional oceanographers on the subject.
“Only submitting herself directly to the elements can she fully experience the reality of wind and waves, and capture accurately, but freely, the colours and tumult and sheer energy unleashed.  She has even described herself as a “foul-weather painter.”  Her present exhibition is deeply influenced by a stay in the Shetlands, which are treeless and windswept and subject to very rapid, abrupt changes of weather – sometimes as many as four inside a single day.  It is, she says, “one of the highest wave-energy environments in the world.”  She made drawings out at sea, but also was fascinated by the landscape – the ruins clustered along the shoreline, long-discussed, stone-lined places where boats were drawn up above the waterline, abandoned and roofless dwellings, stone walls with empty windows staring out to sea “testament not only to the migration of people, but also to loss of life and the uncontrollable nature of the sea.  I cannot but be aware of this as I stride along the cliffs and clamber and crouch on rocks, staring out to sea as I draw and paint.”
“Janette Kerr is not a realist, nor is she an abstractionist, but goes her own individual way between them.  As a rule, there are few directly recognisable details in her pictures, almost no people and few houses even, yet it is all observed or experienced at first hand, and nothing is slurred over by gestures or showy brushwork.  She grew up in a generation of artists who knew abstract painting familiarly, and who were able to make their own accommodation with it.  They did not despise subject matter but they found that it could be conveyed most tellingly not through description, but through the medium of concentrated visual images.
“One of her greatest assets is the quality of her brushwork, which is as free as an Abstract Expressionist’s; it is dynamic and suggestive, and has an organic life of its own.  Her formats vary a good deal – some have a basic, sea-and-sky divide with rudimentary horizon line, while others tilt almost giddily into steep diagonals.  And she is capable of conveying a sense of inexorable, upward motion, the rhythm of a big wave rising higher and still higher until it threatens anything – shore, rocks, houses, boats – which gets in its way. However, I should not exaggerate or harp on a single string.  She has painted calm seas as well as wild ones, even “straight” landscapes when she is in the mood.  Yet it is in the foamier sea paintings that she seems most herself, in a lineal descent from Turner and Francis Danby or even, in some respects, the great Peter Lanyon.  In that sense she is a Romantic artist, though with an added quality of modern awareness.  She herself has defined her own special area, “It is the periphery of the land that I am drawn to – the far edges of a place – margins between land and sea which blur with the ebb and flow of tides; areas that feel remote and uninhabited, which seem touched more by the erosion of land – the action of wind and rain – than by human occupation.”

In 2011 Janette was elected President of the Royal West of England Academy

Group and Invited Exhibitions
2009 Stour Gallery, Shipston-on-Stour (3 person)
Around the British Coastline - Richard Hagen Gallery, Broadway, Bowlish Gallery, Bowlish
Cadogan’s Country Art Show, Hampshire, Workshop Wales Gallery, Fishguard
Affordable Art Fair, London
2008   Edinburgh Art Fair (Bowlish Gallery), Cadogan’s Country Art Show, Hampshire
Night: A Time Between - Royal West of England Academy, Affordable Art Fair, Battersea
Summer Exhibition, Cadogan Contemporary
2007    Earth - Rook Lane Chapel, Frome Art Festival
Micro-Macro - Queens Street Gallery, Emsworthy, Hampshire (2 person)
Affordable Art Fair (Bowlish Gallery), Bristol, Inspires Gallery, Oxford  (2 person)
Alpha House Gallery, Sherbourne, Around the Fort – South Cadbury
Quartz Visual Arts Festival, Taunton, Bowlish Contemporary Gallery, Bowlish
Cadogan’s Country Art Show, Hampshire, Sadler Street Gallery, Wells
Stour Gallery, Shipston-on-Stour.

Solo Exhibitions
2009    Peripheral Visions - Cadogan Contemporary Gallery, Origin Gallery, Dublin
2007   Edge - Hybrid Gallery, Honiton, St Giles Gallery, Norwich
2004   Adam Gallery, Bath & London  
2002   Stour Gallery, Shipston-on Stour
2001   Anthony Hepworth Fine Art, Bath
1999   Hartnoll Gallery, London

Selected Exhibitions

2007-1997  Royal West of England, Bristol
2006   Royal Academy Summer Show
2002/1998/97/95 30th Laing Seascape & Landscape Annual Competition, Mall Galleries, London
2000   Hunting Art Competition, London

Work in collections      Royal West of England Academy Permanent Collection,Tallboys Bequest, Bristol
Victoria Art Gallery Print Collection (Bath), Grizedale Society  (Cumbria)
Colle Verde Art Trust, Tuscany, Private collections in UK, Europe, USA, SA, Norway

2003   Elected Royal West of England Academician
2000   Windle Trust Bursary
1999   David Murray Studentship Award, Royal Academy Schools
1996   Ruskin/Colle Verde Travel Bursary
1995   1st prize, Laing Landscape Art (SW)


2010   The Booth, Shetland
2006 & 2008  Cill Riallaig, International artists & writers retreat, S Ireland


2008   Night: A Time Between, catalogue (editor and contributor)
2005/6/7  Entry in Who’s Who in Art, Hilmarton Manor Press
2006   Fifty Wessex Artists. Publisher: [Evolver] Books
2005   Night & Indeterminacy: A Study of Night in Painting, PhD thesis (2005)
2004   Solo Show Catalogue, Adam Gallery
2000   In House Twice - Artists’ Book, Wild Conversations Press  


PhD. (Practice-based, Fine Art) University of the West of England 2005
Post Graduate Diploma in Fine Art, University of The West of England


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