But I Know That You Are Mine To Keep
, 2014. Oil on canvas, 140x140cm.
Paula MacArthur is deeply fascinated with jewels; tiny objects loaded with such powerful symbolism and overwhelming emotion. Analytical by nature, MacArthur studies the structure of these prisms objectively whilst subjectively delving into all the personal and political associations around these tiny but precious stones. Enlarged a thousand times these jewels transform into cosmic bodies. The images deteriorate as the viewer approaches to analyse them; the focus moves from the subject to the physicality of the process of making. MacArthur works to replicate the form with gestures of both viscous and watery colour and by allowing it to slip and merge the paint becomes as ephemeral as the sparkle, echoing the unattainable ideals these minute treasures symbolise.
Paula MacArthur trained at Loughborough College of Art & Design, The Royal Academy Schools and Turps Art School. She was a prize winner at John Moores 18, winner of the NPG Portrait Award and was selected for the WW Solo Award in 2014 as well as having been awarded residencies at The Walker Art Gallery, Liverpool and Atelier Austmarka in Norway.