Project 2 Research Point Peter Doig and Nicholas Herbert.

I have purposefully left the research points within Project 3 until last. I suffer from self diagnosed googlitis, I am trying to refrain and stay focused on one idea and not overload myself with too much information. I have been getting so much inspiration from the course which is extremely positive but for the short-term in the previous exercises I wanted to concentrate on the mark making experimentation (inspired by student visits) and tutor recommendation to try wash techniques. I knew that looking at more work may have changed that direction and now having explored that idea I can move on.

I have viewed and am familiar with Monet, Cezanne, Hockney and Virtues Landscapes before so I have focused this research on the unfamiliar work of Peter Doig and Nicholas Herbert’s series of drawings of the Chiltern Hills.

Nicholas Herbert


Fig 1 Nicholas Herbert Landscape L934 Sharpenhoe Series, The West Flank of Sharpenhoe, The Chiltern Hills  22 x 15cm. 2016. Mixed media: graphite, colour pencil, soluble crayon, acrylic and pastel on white paper. Signed and dated on reverse.

My initial view of Nicholas Herbert’s Chiltern Hills I was mistaken to think they were paintings and initial thoughts were that  I imagine there is a lot of Texture from the brush marks, however after close inspection the “drawings” are mixed media varying of  graphite, colour pencil, soluble crayon, chalk, acrylic and pastel on white paper.  I would love to watch this artists technique and its hard without viewing an original to break down which medium has been used where. They are abstracted visions that capture the sense or atmosphere of the place. They are very inspiring and remind me of a contemporary Turner. The objects assuming they are clouds, the sea tree’s, tree gatherings, hills and valleys are only hinted at which as a viewer creates a private or personal visual narrative.

Interestingly they are small drawings 20 x 15 cm approx but the almost monochromatic tone and mark making is exquisite. Above is my favourite from the drawings.

Nicholas Herbert is British born in 1955 here is further information the artist:

Peter Doig  (Born 1959)

I have come across Doigs work before and for some reason I always think of Christmas when I look at his paintings possibly because of the lights, colour and imagination that is captured within them and that the image below (the image I recognise as his work) is a winter scene that contains (my opinion) a child playing in water/ ice. The water and the reflection has been captured magically.

peter doig Blotter

Fig 2 Peter Doig Blotter 1993 Oil on Canvas

Interestingly the artist who was born in london and has lived in Trinidad and Canada “Peter Doig is an artist who seems perpetually en route elsewhere. When we meet in London he has just flown in from New York..” (Hudson 2013). This will explain that vibrancy (Caribbean culture of vibrant paintings) that I was picking up from viewing multiple images of his work.

“I’m just one of those people who don’t feel they’re from anywhere,” he says with a smile. Yet a sense of place and the issue of where the individual is from, or – more importantly – where they think they’re from, are he admits, “definitely questions in my work” (Hudson 2013).

I can relate to the feeling that I do not feel from anywhere due to the amount of travelling and spending time abroad that I have previously done and I enjoy how Doig puts this culture into his work.

Here is my favourite piece by Peter Doig which combines the abstraction of the paint, the Caribbean vibrancy and a representation of place of the muddiness of the swamp.

3205_peter_doig Louisiana

Fig 3 Peter Doig Music for the Future 2002-2007

The Tate online has a an interesting selection of his etchings but I was particularly interested in Black Curtain (towards Monkey Island) 2004 Oil on Linen. This Image obstructs the viewer placing you inside (what I imagine to be) a hotel looking out but then this is where I am seeing with my own memory.


Fig 4 Peter Doig Black Curtain  2004 Oil on Linen

What both Doig and Herbert do successful is capture a sense, an atmosphere and mood of place. I initially had a preference for Herbert’s work however now I understand the context behind Doigs work and the more I explore I am truly captivated.



Hudson, M (2012) Peter Doig the Interview: the Triumph of painting In:The Telegraph [Online] (accessed 18th May 2017)

Fig 1 Nicholas Herbert Landscape L934  (accessed 18th May 2017)

Fig 2 Peter Doig Blotter 1993 (accessed 18th May 2017)

Fig 3 Peter Doig Music for the Future 2002-2007 (accessed 18th May 2017)

Fig 4 Peter Doig Black Curtain Oil on Linen 2004 (accessed 18th May 2017)


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