Artist: Vanessa Garwood - 4me4you

4me4you Features - ‘reducing her colour palette..’


4me4you recently enjoyed a visit to PM/AM Gallery, where the spotlight illuminated the work of the talented artist Vanessa Garwood.


Vanessa Garwood, initially known for her mastery in oil-based portraiture, has evolved her artistic journey to embrace a diverse range of mediums and disciplines. This expansion has provided her with a broader canvas for creative expression, pushing the boundaries of her subject matter.

‘reducing her colour palette..’

Artist: Vanessa Garwood
  • Transitioning to a limited palette of black, white, and grey, Garwood delves into life’s contrasting narratives with a literal visual representation, capturing the dynamic interplay on her canvases. Despite the constraint of this aesthetic choice, her works resonate with humour and satire, offering viewers an accessible entry point into her candid exploration of life’s challenges.
  • In her latest artistic phase, Garwood has made bold decisions to paint exclusively in greyscale and switch from oils to the quicker drying medium of acrylics. These changes have streamlined her process, fostering a deeper immediacy in her work, which she considers her most personal to date.
Artist: Vanessa Garwood
  • The transition to a shorter window for paint manipulation may limit the time for technical refinement, yet it ignites a newfound spontaneity in Garwood’s expression. Embracing this flux state, she thrives without the burden of overthinking.

Artist: Vanessa Garwood
  • While her earlier focus was primarily on human subjects, including portraits, nudes, and dancers over two decades, she now draws inspiration from both reality and fantasy, blending boundless imagination with real-life figures. Despite the whimsical elements infused into her compositions, Garwood’s commitment to naturalism ensures a relatable connection for the viewer.

  • Surprisingly, the absence of colour doesn’t diminish the vitality of her work; rather, it amplifies the raw energy of her paintings, captivating the viewer’s imagination in monochrome. Garwood achieves a remarkable feat, activating the perception of colour in the mind without its physical presence, underscoring the power of her artistic vision.
Artist: Vanessa Garwood
  • A notable theme in Garwood’s oeuvre is the strong presence of women engaged in everyday rituals seldom depicted in traditional art history—moments shared over drinks, cigarettes, laughter, and embraces.
  • These scenes epitomise expressive freedom, celebrating vivacity while acknowledging underlying insecurities and challenges. They serve as a poignant reflection of a world grappling with oppressive struggles, yet reaching out for moments of joy and camaraderie amidst uncertainty.