It is unusual to find an Exhibition open at this time of year, when most people are concerned with Christmas shopping. John Pooler though is unperturbed. It is his third year exhibiting at the Nottingham Society of Artists in the unwanted ‘Christmas slot’, and with record sales this year; hopefully, he will be exhibiting for many Christmases to come.
I’ve often wondered though, how artists can bear to part with their artwork, after all those painstaking hours at the easel. Each of John’s landscapes captures a specific place- they map his travels all over the world, and back to Nottingham itself. Often he just goes for a drive in the car, parks up, and paints what he sees. Each picture has its own story to tell. Looking at each of his paintings, he can remember back to the moment in which he was painting them. In his artwork, he really ‘lives for the moment’ each landscape is completed in the afternoon it was started, and is all the more unified for it. This is why the paintings seem almost fragmented John explains, but the continuity of their creation is evident in their perfection. The heavy and vivid watercolours are juxtaposed with the light and delicate ones. What inspired me is that even though they were by the same artist, it is almost as if they are painted by different people. It is surely an enviable talent to be so versatile.
Not only this, but alongside his landscapes, John does line drawings, where the fewest pencil strokes are used to create figures. If one mistake is made, the piece is ruined. These are as striking in their simplicity as his landscapes are in their vivacity. The only thing that would unite them as being by the same artist, is that all the work is instantaneous, concerned with capturing that single moment in time.
There is a particularly striking painting of a face which uses a solemn black and brown colour scheme. Faces are a subject which John said he doesn’t usually paint. He explained he was probably very angry when he painted this one, which emphasises the fact that not only do these paintings create a moment in time, but they also have the ability to capture the emotions accompanying them- they are memories.
So, after creating such masterpieces, why does John part with the memories of his travels, the people he met along the way, and the stories they tell? Because, he says “artists have to eat.”