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Jean-François Millet’s The gleaners (Des glaneuses) 1857 inspired my Sulman entry. Despite the move from an agrarian to an industrial culture, gleaning is something the poor continue to do to survive. The title refers to Millet’s painting, the year my work was painted (2015), and the artist who most influenced my application and approach to oil painting, Swedish artist Mamma Andersson.
No work is made in a vacuum. Other artists and histories are always present. The use of oils in my work is reminiscent of watercolours and consciously avoids gestural swathes of paint, which suggest power and money. My work and the use of paint speak of silence and silenced women.
- Madeleine Preston, 2016