Lesley Banks: Alexander’s Dark Band

06-10-2006 - 04-11-2006

"These new paintings focus on my former home, a tenement flat in Glasgow. I lived there during the 1990's, had my first child and produced many paintings inspired by my life there. After reading a book by Julie Myserson called 'Home' in which she researched everyone who had ever lived in her Victorian house in London, I decided to revisit West Princes Street and go in the opposite direction by painting everyone who had ever lived there since I left. Like layers of wallpaper, elements of my time there remain such as the green front door, the couch, the half painted fireplace, and the wonderful views with huge skies - a window to the weather.

Each time a resident moves in they add another layer. The new owners' life adds inspiration to the new work. Some paintings depict Gill, a friend who bought the flat and lived there alone during a turbulent period in her life. She travelled a lot, including a trip to Delhi for an Indian wedding. Now she has moved on and moved out, and the new tenants are siblings Joseph and Rachel."

It is important to Lesley to get to know people before she paints them. These latest paintings relate mysteriously both visually and narratively to Lesley's previous works. They are a new thread which will continue an ongoing theme - forward looking rather than backward because of its visual inspiration. They add a ghostly presence, a thin layer of time, and factual and fresh elements mixing her time and past into the present.