Orlanda Broom is a contemporary artist based in London; her discipline is abstract and landscape painting, inspired by nature and our impact on the planet. Her works signify her gratitude for nature yet highlighting the rhetoric of the ever-increasing loss of natural habitats. Depicted in opulent impressions of utopia in richly imagined scenes.
My interest lies in nature and our impact on the planet. My landscape paintings depict wild, exotic places… slightly otherworldly because of the absence of any human presence.
She cultivates her exotic oasis by manipulating paint and resin, bringing to life a raw, untamed floral elegance that blooms a seducing radiance of emerging beauty. We managed to speak with Orlanda ahead of her upcoming solo exhibition, “Rewild“, at Grove Square Galleries on 29th April 2021.
Q: For those who don’t know you, can you please introduce yourself?
A: I’m Orlanda Broom, a UK-based artist primarily making paintings.
Q: What is your inspiration, and why do you do what you do?
A: My interest lies in nature and our impact on the planet. My landscape paintings depict wild, exotic places… slightly otherworldly because of the absence of any human presence. I see them as a forecast to what the world might look like after a reset, where nature has rebalanced. I take inspiration from many different things… it can be photographs from travels, botanical books, being out in the landscape. It’s my intention to create an alluring landscape that celebrates nature but sets up a narrative that has a more dystopian undertone.
Q: Can you tell us about your creative process?
A: My paintings can be separated into two distinct forms; landscape paintings depicting lush, exotic places as just described and abstracts painting which are non-figurative but hint at organic forms. The approach to each is so different that one compliments the other – I like the shift between working with a fast process where there’s an element of chance to the opposite of that, which is a lengthy layering and editing process. Key to me is experimentation with the materials and surfaces I use. I like to work out my ideas and compositions on the canvas
Q: Your work has a current theme comprising of fascinating landscapes fused in a vivid abstract aesthetic. Can you tell us the motivation behind this?
A: The connection is in what paint will do… if it’s poured liquid or thickly painted, it’s the medium – paint – that leads the way. For me this is the fundamental of appeal of making abstract paintings… pure form and colour. But I have an interest in landscape painting; I take the free and experimental approach and apply it to the more figurative elements in my work. The two bodies of work are starting to fuse a little more because of this parallel in abstracted mark-making and finding forms within these techniques.
Q: What was the first piece of Art you created that cemented your path as an artist?
A: That is a tricky question because I’ve been chipping away at becoming an artist for a long, long time! I studied for my Masters in 1997 but, with hindsight, lacked focus after graduating. I wanted to travel and worked to do that during my 20’s. Like a lot of artists, there was a time when I was working other jobs and only able to in the studio part-time… so it’s taken many small steps over quite a long time.
But to give an answer, probably being commissioned to do a large-scale painting for the lobby of the Four Seasons in New York. This was the biggest paintings I’ve made to date and I loved working on it. I had to temporarily move out of my London studio and rent an industrial unit in the countryside to complete it. It was a huge challenge, lots of pressure but it gave me confidence.
Q: What is your favourite piece from your body of work, and why?
A: It’s usually the last thing I’ve finished because that feeling of achievement and satisfaction is still lingering, while all the problems that you’ve resolved are still fresh in your mind. I’ve just finished a new piece for my upcoming show ‘Rewild’ and I’m really pleased with it, it’s a predominantly green palette on an oval panel which is quite unusual for me. The themes to do with lost wilderness and regeneration I think are conveyed, there’s an invitation to narrative interpretation.
Q: In your opinion, what is the lasting impact of Art?
A: It can be different things to everyone but it’s fundamentally communication.
Q: What do you think about the current state of the art world?
A: It’s going to be an interesting time. I think there needs to be a shift in the way galleries, fairs and collectors move physically around the world – that has to change and that’s one silver lining to hopefully come out of the pandemic… people have had to do what they do but confined to their locality. Everyone’s adapting at the moment and hopefully will continue to do so with environmental impact as the priority.
Q: What are your thoughts on NFT art and the current NFT market boom?
A: Honestly, I don’t know enough about it to comment. I’m open minded to new formats and we’re increasingly operating in AR worlds. Again, it’s an interesting time!
Q: What role does the artist have in society?
A: To communicate, to be creative in approach and offer a different perspective. There are many good things coming out of artist led initiatives, particularly at the moment… art and artists are really important in society.
Q: Lastly, what does Art mean to you?
A: I think there is such a broad appeal in art… it can run you through a wide range of responses and emotions. I get enormous pleasure from looking at work by other artists; small pieces that I have collected and have on my walls at home, there’s a simplicity to the aesthetic joy I get from these every day. But Art also has the power to really move you, inform and educate you.