About - rachelvandersteen.co.uk
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A Moorland Response

Dartmoor is never the same from one day to the next.  There is restless change and great peace.  Mist can drift into sunshine, sunshine can become rain, heavy rain.  Light and colours change sometimes suddenly, unexpectedly, sometimes slowly and subtly.

I have tried to evoke those changes in my series of images of Dartmoor – the varying colours and evolving textures throughout the year’s evolution – the bracken in Spring, fresh vibrant green, the gorse, one variety blooming in Spring the other in Summer,  the bracken dying back to browns and the grasses burnt off back to earth pigment and washes.

Dartmoor also cannot be separated from the down-land farms. Conjoined, parted only by dry stone walls and ancient corn-ditches – blurred boundaries, ploughed fields and pasture meet open moorland.

The images created on Perspex and Aluminium reflect the moorland streams, mysterious  peat coloured waters, swimming with reeds and bright green foliage, supporting a myriad of wildlife.  Deep waters flooding in a film over rich fine, delicate plants.

The collections reflect both repetition and variation in nature.  A single species takes on many different forms and when collected together this is displayed.

Rachel was born on Dartmoor’s edge.  At the age of 50 she decided to take a degree in Fine Art at the University of Plymouth where she gained a 1st class honours.  Since then she has exhibited over several years in Devon Open Studios and currently has a piece of work at the Greenhill Open.

Exhibitions and studies

2006 – Curated exhibition at Chagford Festival

2006 – 2009 – Private tuition with Stephanie Reiss

2009 – Dartmoor Arts Project – printmaking course under Double Elephant

2010 – Dartmoor Arts Project – oil painting course

2009 – 2011 – Foundation Degree, Fine Art, Exeter College

2011 – Exhibition at Chagford Show with other local artists and makers

2011 – 2012 – BA Hons Fine Art degree final year, Plymouth University – 1st class honours

2012 – Degree Show, Royal William Yard, Plymouth

2012 – Devon Open Studios at Great Ensworthy Barn

2013 – Devon Open Studios at Great Ensworthy Barn

2015 – Devon Open Studios at Greenaway

2016 – Devon Open Studios at Gidleigh Village Hall

2017 – Greenhill Arts Summer exhibition

2017  – Solo exhibition at Chagford Inn