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Basil Beattie


Many of the images [ From the drawings used by Beattie] became subjects for paintings.  "they were not attempts to paint literal things, but were used as vehicles for conveying symbolic and metaphoric associations. The ziggurat triggered the Witness Series of paintings and a key work titled ‘Present Bound’. The image of the ziggurat in this painting is the only part of the work which is painted – the rest of the linen is left untouched.

The language of the paint defining the image suggests a narrative of vitality and life, while remaining separated and isolated from the surroundings. A metaphor perhaps for a human condition.

"essentially abstract motifs can be read as tunnels, steps, ladders or thresholds and are used as the means to manipulate spatial parameters within the paintings and to hint at potential readings that take place in the subconscious. Still abstract in their concerns withmaterial, technical procedure and formal manipulations of space within a two dimensional picture plane Beattie’s paintings offer profound and complex reflections upon how we think and experience"