Artist’s Statement – May 2018

A scrap iron man’s boots summed up so much. The worn soles spoke of hours trudging dirty wet streets, the cracked leather told of the need of functionality over looks.

The old hammers were left amidst the waste, discarded at the end of a day? Their worn handles spoke of intimacy with human hands whilst the gashed dented metal told of brute force and the need to subdue.

The old Mercedes was undergoing ‘body-work’ it’s stylish lines and smooth surfaces were being brought back to life under the tender eye of a craftsman. The decay and rust scoured away awaiting a new skin of paint.

The wall stood passively marking time. It bore the graffiti patiently but the scratches still smarted. The shaft of sunlight brought relief like a warm bath for a bruised body.

The objects I paint tell a story, they stand in witness to lives of labour, repetition and industry. I paint human resourcefulness and celebrate beauty in the everyday.

Ewen MacDonald – Istanbul

Ewen MacDonald’s watercolour paintings cover a wide spectrum of techniques and styles. His landscapes of Istanbul, Central Asia and his native UK reference the long heritage of watercolour painting. His studies of the rusting, discarded objects of modern life in watercolour draw our attention to artifacts rich in social history, to objects that are sculpted through common everyday use and the action of the elements on them. Using traditional pure watercolour techniques and a realist style he combines texture, detail, form and colour to create images of objects usually left invisible to us by their familiarity.

The city of Istanbul is host to most of the exhibitions Ewen has been a part of, although in the last four years he has also exhibited with the Royal Institute for Painters in Watercolour at the Mall Galleries London and once with the Royal Watercolour Society in 2014.

Ewen has a degree from University College London and a teaching diploma from the Institute of Education London University, he was born in the UK in 1967, worked in London, China and presently works on the Asian side of Istanbul, Turkey.

Contact email: em@emacdonaldwatercolours.com