Dawn to Dusk

In a new series that puts viewers at the heart of the gardens, English painter Lucy Marks captures the cycle of a day at Petworth House and Park.

In July, Sussex-based artist Lucy Marks unveiled a new body of work — 50 paintings in oil and watercolor — inspired by the iconic National Trust site in England.

Petworth Days (watercolor, 21 1/2 x 21 1/2 in.)

Nestled in the South Downs, Petworth House is best known for its landscaped park and its fine art collection, including works by John Constable and J.M.W. Turner — two masters Marks draws inspiration from.

“The title of the exhibition, ‘Dawn to Dusk’, is a nod to Turner, who regularly visited and painted Petworth” Marks explains. “His work featured sunsets and sunrises in both watercolor and oil. As a landscape painter, I too wanted to capture the cycle of a day at Petworth. From its dreamy sunrises to its gentle and dramatic sunsets.”

Trees at Dawn (watercolor, 11 4/5 x 11 4/5 in.)

“Yes, we can see echoes of Turner and Constable” says Anthony J. Lester, member of the International Association of Art Critics and The Critics’ Circle, “but Marks’ images are certainly not flaccid imitations. Far from it, for she has developed a highly distinctive style that is intensely personal.”

The series will be featured in a solo exhibition, “Dawn to Dusk,” in the Servants’ Quarters Gallery, Petworth House and Park, through September, 19, 2021.

Deer Park and Sunlit Skies (watercolor, 11 4/5 x 11 4/5 in.)

Marks starts by working en plein air, drawing sketches in watercolor and oil from the landscape, then creates the final piece in her studio, removing any superfluous indication of representation or figuration.

More a free interpretation than a hyperrealistic depiction, Mark’s work allows viewers to make their own interpretation of Petworth Park, and invites them to view the 17th-century site in a new light. “Walking round the show is a bit like exploring the park and gardens” according to the artist. “There are leafy quiet spots through to majestic sweeps of wildness; some tight and busy areas, and some more relaxed open areas.”

Late Sunset Over The Land (watercolor, 11 4/5 x 11 4/5 in.)

Lucy Marks holds an MA in Fine Art from Brighton University and works and exhibits on the South Coast. Her work as a landscape painter focuses on capturing the energy of the environment in a non-representational way. Her process is to work directly from the landscape, either painting en plein air or sketching, then creating the final piece in her studio. An associate member of the Royal Watercolour Society, Marks has won a number of awards including the Humphrey’s Purchase Prize at the ING Discerning Eye exhibition. She has shown work with The Royal Institute of Oil Painters, The Sunday Times Watercolour Competition, The Royal Society of Marine Artists, the Royal Institute of Painters in Watercolour, The Society of Women Artists and more. Marks is also a member of the Hesketh Hubbard Society.


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