Little’s modern Renaissance women

Artist Graham Little will be showing his latest gouaches at his latest solo exhibit at the Alison Jacques Gallery in central London. There has been an established working relationship between the gallery and Little since the late ‘90s, when owner Alison Jacques noticed a sketch book of Little’s drawings at a show for his sculpture work. After encouraging him to continue with these, Little is now a recognized artist and has had four solo shows at Jacques’ gallery. Little’s work currently at the Alison Jacques Gallery, showing until 14 February, will be the series of gouaches he has been working on for the past two years. This work features women frozen in a moment of contemplation whose expression can transfix the viewer. While the styles used in the paintings draw from both the aesthetic movement of the 19th century as well as modernism, the women featured are in dress and environments from more recent eras. The combination of Little’s composition and technique give an air reminiscent of that from Italian Renaissance paintings of nymphs and goddesses.

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Graham Little
Gouache and coloured pencil on paper
© The Artist; Courtesy Alison Jacques Gallery, London
Photography Michael Brzezinski

The gouaches employ the common theme of women of the “housewives” era that may give some insight into the overarching narrative of the series. By contrasting dramatic, geometric patterns with the delicacy and simplicity of the women painted, Little creates soft figures with features so dainty they rival those of Raphael and Botticelli. This unexplored idea gives the viewer a very authentic experience that can easily lead to becoming lost in the mesmerizing gazes of the familiar, yet foreign, women. Currently, the Alison Jacques Gallery is working on a publication for Little that will be published this spring.