Born in Nottingham, Jill Bennett moved to the Scottish Borders in early childhood and is a graduate of Edinburgh College of Art, specialising in Drawing and Painting. Based in Edinburgh she is now working full time as an artist having worked part time as a teacher of art in special education for some years. Jill continues to work in oil, gouache and watercolour but an interest in printmaking, in particular lithography, has developed over the last ten years into a major commitment.
In printmaking the surface achieved by tusche washes, the use of semi transparent colour to build up the layers of an image on a slab of stone and the opportunity to use the very nature and texture of the stone in the final work, has enabled the re-investigation of many themes of enduring interest such as ancient structures and stone work, peeling layers of paint and rusting metal These themes continue to be of major importance in printmaking and have been a very strong influence on recent paintings
Cycladic Pigeon Houses
A series of lithographs and paintings have been developed over the last few years using the sculptural shape and decorative designs of traditional Cycladic pigeon houses in their landscape. The Greek Islands of Tinos and Andros are dotted with ancient dovecotes which follow the same basic two storey rectangular shape. These stone built, white stuccoed structures are very domestic in appearance and scale not unlike a more elaborate version of our own Scottish doo’cot.
Each pigeon house is unique in its decorative detail, reflecting the individuality and artistic sensibilities of the owners who have used popular traditional Greek motifs of sun wheel, cypress tree and lozenge. The finials on the roof may have been landmarks for the doves to recognise home. The fact that many of the dovecotes are in a dilapidated state adds interest with peeling paint and plasterwork and crumbling stone.
Using the simple sculptural form of the structure and the infinite variety of intricate detail within, these prints and paintings have been created to form strong monolithic shapes, richly coloured and patterned, reflecting the strong light and colours of the landscape and the texture of the disintegrating surfaces.
The Hellenic Centre, Marylebone, London:
“Peresterionas” – Dovecotes of the Cycladic Islands and other Greek Images
lithographs and paintings
Edinburgh Printmakers Christmas Exhibition
2005 Visual Arts Scotland annual exhibition
2005 London Art Fair
2004/5 Glasgow Art Fair
May 2004 Cycladic Pigeon Houses – solo exhibition
May 2003 Collaborative Lithograph Folio – 12 artists