May 4 – 27, 2012
Opening Night May 4th – 6 to 8pm
The Royal Society of Learned Insects invites you to view a Selection of Recent Portraits of its Members
I began this series the way I begin many of my paintings; with a desire to explore the rich variety of colours and shapes offered by my subjects. The gorgeous jewel-tones of insect carapaces caught my artist’s eye and I found myself helpless to resist temptation. As so often happens in the studio, a small collection of ‘bug portraits’ snowballed quickly into something bigger; I started to mix fantasy and science, imbuing my figures with the social graces of human beings whilst researching Latin names and creature habits.
Fairytales are a constant source of inspiration for me, and I began to create stories for my characters, and to want to build a more tactile world around them. As a jewellery artist as well as a painter, I am used to working in three dimensions; but this is my first series of painted work in which I have combined media to create an experience that is sensory as well as visual. I drew upon Victorian-era fairy stories and scientific textbooks to create what I hope is a satisfying meld of wonder and fact, a collection of portraits of the type of characters who might appear in a 19th century children’s book, substantiated by little facts and curios drawn from their real-world entomological origins.
Claudia and her work:
Claudia Rubinstein deals in oil paints and semiprecious gems, combining a sumptuous colour sense with a broad spectrum of materials to craft one-of-a-kind paintings, and jewellery that is at once wearable and a work of art.
Her paintings reference classic fairytales and fantastically romanticized world histories, as do some of her works with beading and jewels. The imaginary, the exotic, and colour for colour’s sake form the foundation of Claudia’s practice.