Zennor Box: Painter and Concept Artist
Zennor’s background is in fine art but she has also worked in animation as a model maker and concept artist since 1994 and on projects such as Aardman’s Were-Rabbit. Her painting style is instantly engaging, recognisable and unusual. Human concerns, habits or fantasies are in every painting, but by using animals or invented creatures Zennor has the freedom to think further than a preconceived idea or a person and concentrate on the characters behaviour. This is shown alongside 3D pieces by the artist’s mother, Greta Berlin, who is a sculptor working in West Dorset.
“I’m fascinated by Human behaviour, how we operate and the things we do. I love putting the mundane habits we have into an odd, amusing or thought provoking context.
Above all I love to make you laugh, not so much a belly laugh as a knowing laugh, one of recognition. Recognising that the thing some weird creature’s doing is the same thing you were doing just now or last week.
Hospitals are the perfect place to show these paintings because most people walking down
a hospital corridor are looking for some sort of distraction or escapism and if the paintings are absurd yet familiar, strange yet humorous, they can quickly transport you, if just for a while to a different place.”
Zennor is also a great believer in the power of art to heal and reduce the need for pain relief. Copies of her prints are available in varying sizes directly from her website zennorbox.com
This is the first in a series of touring exhibitions which will travel around a pocket of collaborating South West NHS Trusts, hopefully the first of many.
Greta Berlin was born and brought up in and around St Ives during the 1940’s and 50’s, surrounded by crafts men and women, artists and fishermen. She was inspired by Bernard Leach, potter and philosopher and her father Sven Berlin, a sculptor - watching them for hours as they formed their work under their hands, smelling the wet clay and the firing kilns, she saw the sculptors slowly reveal an image from a block of stone and the fishermen watching the horizon.
Her playgrounds were the rocks, the sea and the moors, rolling down the steep slopes where the women dried and bleached their sheets that were held down by stones at the corners and the fishermen dried, mended and tarred their nets.
All her life Greta has been an observer and has learned mostly by osmosis, her work is a reflection on her take on the world. “Birds have been a source of inspiration all my life. They embody a wide range of characters; the elegant to the clumsy, the serious to the ridiculous, from the serene to the menacing.”
These days she is interested in decay, finding old rusty steel and broken things and bringing them back to life. This group is the first time she has worked to this scale with these materials. They are mostly constructed from found, degraded machine parts found on East Beach, Lyme Regis.
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We aim to enhance the healing environment for patients, visitors and staff here at Dorset County Hospital, through visual art, performance and music. Please help us to continue and expand our programme by donating. Your donations can be used to commission and purchase new artwork to brighten up the hospital or to fund new participatory projects with professional artists and musicians.