Robert Priseman

Robert Priseman was born in Derbyshire in 1965, and currently lives and works in Essex. Priseman is a British artist, collector, writer, curator and publisher . Priseman began his career painting portraits, of which his sitters include the Dalai Lama, Phil Collins, Jeremy Paxman and Cardinal Basil Hume. However Priseman later moved on from portrait painting to address more psychological and socio-political issues, which aim to engage and provoke viewers. Such works include The Hospital Paintings, Subterraneans, The Francis Bacon Interiors, No Human Way to Kill, The Troubles and Nazi Gas Chambers. For example ‘No Human Way to Kill’ features etchings by Priseman presenting the five different methods of execution used in the United States (Hanging, Firing Squad, Gassing, Lethal Injection and Electrocution).

Robert Priseman
Lethal Injection, Etching, 2007

For the purpose of this blog post, as I am looking at environments I will be exploring Priseman’s ‘Home: A Series’ – currently located at Swindon Museum and Art Gallery. Unfortunately when checking their website they do not have the works on display so I was unable to view the work itself. However I understand that in this series Priseman paints different homes where crimes have taken place.

However I could view other works of Priseman’s in alternative series of works illustrated his website. In response to the works of Priseman I thought it would be a good exercise to practice painting buildings in general so I decided to take a photograph of my parent’s home and then try to paint it in a realistic way.

I continued working with watercolours, but first sketched the house using pencil. I was quite meticulous in this process using a ruler and measuring the house and lines to create an accurate depiction. I then used light washes of watercolour, but it felt unfinished and the previously crisp lines had become dissolved so I decided to rework back in to the painting with a fine liner pen to offer more definition.

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