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Clare Littleton was born on the Masai Mara, Kenya, East Africa, and has developed a varied career and a deep understanding of community of culture. At the age of seven she travelled back and forth from Kenya to boarding school in England and later completed her education at the University of Wales graduating in environmental, social and cultural anthropology. Much of Clare’s work over the years has involved field research and travel to various parts of the world including Nepal, Tibet, Ethiopia, Jordan and Jamaica. Many years later Clare returned to Jordan to live with the Bedouin in the cave city of Petra where she continued to expand her knowledge of community of culture through the medium of art and photography.
“Creating art is visual intimacy for me, it’s like tasting the world with my eyes. Art has always been my passion since I can remember. I started painting as a child growing up on the Masai Mara. My love of nature and an intense curiosity for life began here surrounded by grassy plains, rolling hills, rivers and wildlife and colourful people within a diverse cultural landscape.
Through studying various painting techniques handed down through history, I admire the layered Flemish technique of the old masters as well as the use of shadows and lights in chiaroscuro used to achieve the illusion of a three dimensional world. When I paint I always keep this in mind with the power of suggestion. I love to find inspiration from the world around me, and the whole process of creating art from conception to the final glaze is the tranquillity of pure contemplation for me. I am mostly self taught, and the medium of my choice is mostly oils on canvas and copper. I try to communicate sensuality, serenity and mystery in my work. For example in “The Kiss”, my recent figurative work, oil on copper, the pink orchids symbolise pure affection, love, luxury, beauty and strength. However, there is a sense of vulnerability in the face of the woman and her lover has the mystery of intention in his eyes.
Being an artist for me is an on going process of learning and growing as an individual. Each piece of work is a journey in itself as in my work titled “The Treasury”. To create this piece I lived with the Bedouin in the village of Sayhun adjacent to the caves of Petra, Jordan, riding on my camel each day to paint. Battling with the dust, chatting to passers by and friends about the meaning of life. As each layer after layer emerges on the canvas so the journey unfolds in real life”
Having travelled the world whilst raising a family, Clare is now living her dream with passion painting full time. Currently settled in a most beautiful part of West Wales overlooking the Teifi River, surrounded by nature, Clare's work continues to evolve through compositions that entice the viewer into a world she shares through her captivating artistic style.