Stephanie Webber is an artist working in the areas of painting, the moving image and sound.
I work by bringing together components, which might appear commonplace, to create spaces where their depth becomes apparent. My paintings are not figurative and my sound pieces and films are not narrative in any conventional sense, but they open up possibilities for the viewer to find their own narratives and meanings.
My paintings are done with egg tempera paint on paper. When I first started painting in this more abstract form, I used a wider range of colours, but over the years I narrowed it down to two: cadmium red and ultramarine blue. The limited range of colours may create a surface impression of simplicity, but with time and attention the complexity emerges. The tempera allows me to build up layers of paint, aiming to create a density and richness. Although my paintings are abstract, I feel that I also channel my interactions with the world onto the paper. The painting evolves in an intuitive process of applying marks, reflecting my perceptions of light, shade and colour.
My sound pieces also work to build up layers, with different aspects shifting in and out of focus. I try to capture my experiences of observing the world around me, paying attention to the sounds of everyday life, which often go unnoticed as background noise. My work brings together disparate sounds from nature and the built environment, removing these from their usual contexts and placing them in a new setting where their aural qualities can be appreciated.
Like my sound-only pieces, my films tune into aspects of the world that might appear mundane, to reveal their underlying richness. Sounds is often the starting point here too: for example, the crackling of arcing electricity. I then use these to create layers, from which individual sounds can emerge. When working with moving images, I often slow these down to make a space where small changes – for example, leaves moving in the breeze - can reveal themselves from an image that initially appears static. As with my paintings and sound, I aim to create films where close attention uncovers the complexity beneath the surface.
This statement evolved out of a conversation between Stephanie Webber and Cee Sullivan. June 2021
“… the paintings are beautiful, they have an ephemeral quality, a fleeting moment captured, an emergence/disappearance, changing temperatures…”
Julia Schauerman electro-acoustic composer
“…’Quarantine’ a sound and moving image piece, like your painting I find it very grounding but not in an easy or settled way - I feel like there's such attention to the denseness of texture and its transformations, as if the surface of objects lifts slightly and shifts without the object itself changing. I think the same thing happens in your painting where little individual strokes suddenly become patches of shadow and texture without anything happening "
Walthamstow School of Art (1968 – 1969)
Liverpool College of Art (1969 – 1971)
Royal College of Art (1990 – 1992)
Galerie Zur Alten Deutschen Schulle, Thun, Swizerland -1989
Galerie Zur Alten Deutschen Schulle, Thun, Swizerland -1990
Crypt Gallery London -1990
Royal College of Art -1992
Putney Library - 2012
Balham Library - 2019
Maximum Density of Sound [MDoS]
Sound/performance group with Julia Schaureman formed in 2000. Various performances in London and Scotland.
Radio Gallery Programme 12 ‘Sight Unseen’ Resonance
104.4fm. In collaboration with Sally Booth, Maria Oshodi
and Julia Shauerman. 2006