Visions at the waterfront.
Located next to Brighton’s teeming waterfronts, artist Helen Beard‘s current studio is a far more spacious space than her previous one. Here she benefits from plenty of room to examine the larger work at a distance, but also to wander around freely whilst pondering new ideas. The mornings, strictly painting-free, are usually slow and thoughtful. Often spent with long seaside walks gazing at the waters, they rise after a much-needed caffeine boost. Between the comfort of her workshop, loud music makes dancing a decompressing activity whilst refining her canvases alone. Among the many voices keeping her company are Four Tet, Little Simz, Kendrick Lamar, and Sault, providing an immersive backdrop influencing the evocativeness of her visuals. Showing up to the studio every day helps keep up with schedules, something she could hardly do by sitting at her kitchen table. The artist also maintains her space immaculately dust-free and tidy at all times, avoiding the messy gathering of dirty brushes, random cluttering and used oils of the working flour. Carefully displayed on shelves and walls are the many finished paintings and needleworks, creating a vibrant environment resonating with the similarly colourful mannequins gathered all around. A great number of art books also fill up her libraries and contribute to the cosiness of the decor. Escorting us throughout our visit is Beard’s trusted pet Yoko, its fluffy white fur and sleepy eyes enthroning the sofa with enviable canine confidence whilst waiting for the next morning’s stroll on the beach.