What is CSR? Corporate social responsibility (CSR) refers to RIAA Barker Gillette’s community initiatives which aim to help and assist members of society.
Artists have always been close to our hearts
- Our head of dispute resolution is married to an ex-criminal barrister; now an author, photographer and artist, Aruna Khanzada, many of whose works can be seen around the office to this day;
- Steven Barker, the head of our criminal defence team’s daughter, Rosie, is an artist (see more below); and
- Penny Dewar, our marketing assistant’s husband Aengus, is a traditional oil painter and commission artist.
We are, therefore, aware of how hard it can be for artists to become ‘known’ and make a ‘name’ for themselves.
It was with that in mind, our ‘Artists in Residence’ project began. Giving up-and-coming artists a chance to have their work displayed at our offices for sale, for colour or simply for appreciation. The works will be rotated between artists giving as many artists a chance as possible to showcase their talents, so quite literally, watch this space! And so, to business…
Aengus decided to become a figurative artist when he saw Caravaggio’s ‘Taking of Christ’ in the Irish National Gallery. Shortly after he left for Florence to study the principles and methods of classical painting. After his training, he worked with the Associazione Bastioni, restoring and preserving Renaissance and Baroque masterpieces. Returning to Ireland to exhibit with the Cherry Lane Gallery, where he was commissioned by the then Irish Taoiseach (Prime Minister) to paint the Irish mythological hero Cuchulainn for the National Art Collection. Other prestigious commissions soon followed: a large-scale contemplative piece for the 6th Century island retreat of Lough Derg; and two large commemorative works for the then European rugby champions, Munster.
Between 2006 and 2012 he painted three large-scale allegories. Each of these paintings were finalists in New York’s annual ARC Salon competition, the world’s largest and most competitive art contest. In 2012 Aengus moved to the UK and began to concentrate on smaller works in pencil and charcoal, keen to take a break from monumental work and reacquaint himself with draughtsmanship.
More recently he has concentrated his efforts on Wildlife, inspired by a wish to draw and paint both the animals of the UK and his youth in Zambia. His animals are not presented to the viewer with sentimentality; they are portraits of power, aggression, beauty, strength and grace.
Aengus has exhibited regularly with the Hannington Gallery at Burgh House and the Fox Club, No.10 Castle Street, the Animal Art Fair and the David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation. He has featured in Country Life, The Field, Tuscan Magazine, and the online version of Kiwi Collection’s magazine, WOW.
Bev’s paintings are colourful, detailed, busy celebrations of her local community and city life.
“For me people make the city, it is in the actions and interactions between people that we generate meaning in our lives but many people are too busy and too distracted to notice the beauty of simple moments. Through my painting I hope to encourage people to take more time within their own lives to notice the beauty of each moment wherever they are.”
Bev’s work divides into two ranges: street Scenes, which focus on connection and community; and pavements and Leaves, which show up close views of leaves on pavements, which are more concerned with internal processes of holding on and letting go.
Emmylou is a London based painter who travels the world, gaining inspiration through use of unique accommodation-locations as pop-up studios. Her freedom of travel and constantly being in transit provide both motivation and inspiration allowing Yeomans to create in solitude each day, for hours at a time.
Yeomans uses water-soluble oils on paper and canvases, as she loves the way it dries to a slightly different shade, much like life changes to produce slightly unexpected outcomes to what was first applied. She mainly paints figures and skies because, for her, they evoke both limitless changing potential and freedom. Painting on large canvases is her favourite. For Yeomans, the overall effect of this is quite consuming as it allows her to experience excitement while adding extra freedom to her creative process.
The drips in Yeomans’ pieces are integral to her concept as they explain the tears: raw, vulnerable and deep emotions she feels when creating a beautiful piece, “Beautiful things get created through pain”. Having gone through severe depression at the end of 2016, she threw herself into her craft and created rituals that changed her life completely, healing the condition through change and lifestyle. “I want the viewer’s response to my artwork to be one of self-empowerment, passion and inspiration to live fully and be true to who they are”.
Hannah is a graphic designer and illustrator living and creating in London. After eight years working across fashion and retail projects both in house and for agencies, she decided to pursue a path of her own and expand on the things that she loves most – drawing, crafting and illustration. Hannah’s trues loves are wildlife and natural things, but she also really enjoys incorporating graphic design and typography background into her ventures.
Michael Cull was born in Lymington, Hampshire and is now an established artist living and working in St Albans.
His earlier work was largely figurative watercolours based on good drawings skills. However, Michael see his work as an evolutionary process and is exploring both representational and non-representational styles. Michael works with oil, wax pastel, acrylic and watercolours.
There is an influence in many of his works, from the beauty of Italy to the diversity of the human figure. Michael believes that visual art should come not only from the eyes but also from the mind. More than this, it should satisfy both at a distance in terms of unity and composition and close-up where the quality of strokes and marks should establish both the integrity and sensual, almost spiritual, aspects of the work.
Michael has taken part in a number of important shows both in Britain and abroad and his work can be found in many private collections.
Rosie Elizabeth Barker
After having received traditional training from artist James Gillick, Rosie is dedicated to maintaining long established techniques involved in oil painting.
She specialises in still life and portraits, and likes to consider her work as a natural progression of traditional techniques and skills with a modern aesthetic.
Rosie’s work tends towards uncluttered compositions, with a focus instead on an appreciation of the form and interplay of the individual elements.
Terry Wood was born in Tottenham and grew up in Potters Bar. He now lives in Stotfold, Hertfordshire, with his wife Jan, who is as passionate about his work as he is.
Terry discovered painting at an early age and every spare moment was spent drawing, sketching or painting. When he was a teenager, he painted his first family portrait of his Mother, Father and Brother, sitting in their front room. The painting was entered into the Royal Academy of Arts Exhibition. Terry went on to study at St. Albans School of Art, where he completed a BA-Hons. Degree in 2D Design. He then worked as a Commercial Artist for many years, but his passion was always for painting. He works in acrylics, watercolour, mixed media, and likes to explore other mediums, such as pastels, gouache and pen and ink.
As for his subject matter, Terry takes his inspiration from many sources. He has travelled extensively, and his sketchbook is usually a digital camera, which he finds very useful, especially when time is in short supply. His talent enables him to paint the most spectacular landscapes, vibrant abstracts, figurative studies and everything else that inspires him.
If you have any queries, about any of the works displayed at our offices, please do not hesitate to contact Penny Dewar, who will put you in touch with the artist directly.
Note: Images not to scale.