This highly acclaimed body of work, started in 2003 following a trip to the local council allotments.
Chris found fascination in the tumble down sheds, greenhouses and characters found tending the land on the allotments in his home town, and consequently took on a piece of land of his own. Time spent in this calming environment inspired a decade long love affair with the humble allotment, which appeared in his paintings alongside the mills and chimneys of the Northern towns around Greater Manchester. His work gained notoriety following an appearance on BBC ‘Gardeners World’ where Chris was comissioned to paint presenter Joe Swifts garden.
‘In the Spring of 2006, I found myself wandering across a local allotment where I met one of the plot holders. I took some reference photographs, and within 10 minutes I knew his life story. As we chatted, he was gathering old wood and dried up twigs from the previous season, burning them in an old rusty oil drum with holes in the side. As the wood smoke caught the low, afternoon sun it was truly charming and reminded me of Van Gogh’s Harvest paintings produced in Arles, South West France. I had the pleasure of staying in the region just a year before, visiting the locations of some of the finest works ever made. It was a light bulb moment in my career. I would say that it was the day I affirmed as an artist….’
Northern Lights is a decade long project of 250 original pieces by Artist Chris Cyprus. Chris had no idea at first that he would be embarking on a project that would span a decade and produce 250 works, initially, making only four paintings in the series that would come to be known as Northern Lights.
‘…What initially struck me about the change in season was the range of colours. I can still recollect the reflections on the surface of the ground at dusk, under sodium street lighting. Warm yellows turning to orange, then lilac pinks, perfectly offset with deepening blues from the dimming sky. The unblemished union of natural and artificial light was so captivating, I began to understand why it had inspired countless artists over generations to paint it….’
Bold Colour, Abstract imagery and uniform canvases are all characteristics of this body of work.
The paintings feature rows of terraced buildings, rooftops, and views from above creating an art deco abstract feel. Zooming in on an area of interest, Chris uses bold colour and light to illustrate snapshots of village life , like a polaroid photograph.
The ability to move seamlessly between photo realistic and naive styles of painting has become an intergral part of Chris originality as an artist. These examples in oils on canvas depict a wide range of northern townscapes displaying keen depth of observation and skill.
A mixed selection of northern landscapes in stunnng colour, using a broad colour palette to describe the aesthetic charm of the unique northern landscape.
Chris always searches for the less obvious beauty within a scene, instead turning to the seemingly mundane for inspiration. The canvas is then transformed into an otherworldly scene, bursting with colour and light.
Recent trips to Italy, South of France and North America saw a change of direction for Chris as he explored new ways of working and techniques. His river studies painted ‘en plein air’ encapsulate a much looser impressionistic style.
After visiting North America in Autumn, Chris returned to using atmospheric contrasting blues and oranges within his night scenes of suburban Vermont and New Jersey.