Artist Q&A with Jonathan Freemantle
Founded on encyclopaedic and intimate understanding of painting and art history, Freemantle’s work explores the intricate relationship between his body, time and the earth as materials and as inspiration. Spanning egg tempera, mountain rocks and ochre in his paintings, he situates the body as an organic presence at one with the landscape, at the same time as integrating the landscape physically in the human act of painting. In an age damned as Anthropocene, In his passionate and viscerally undeniable canvases, Freemantle consciously and resolutely makes the case for redemption and forgiveness of the human and as a male of the man, on the planet.
Freemantle, has been exhibiting internationally since 2007, with group and solo exhibitions in London, Cape Town, Amsterdam, Johannesburg and Edinburgh, including a major commission by The Standard Bank Gallery, Johannesburg.
Who is your favorite artist of all time?
That’s an impossible question! I don’t think I can answer with just one artist. At different times in my career I’ve had artist’s who have inspired me deeply. Different artists at different times. At the beginning there was Leonardo Da Vinci. We had a reproduction of his cartoon for ‘The Virgin & Child with Saint Anne and Saint John the Baptist’ (the original is at the National Gallery in London) hanging in our home in Cape Town where I grew up. My father is also an artist, he spoke about the work with such reverence and it rubbed off.
When I finally arrived in London age 17 to study Fine Art I made a pilgrimage to see the original and it was so deeply moving. Then there is Cezanne. He was the first painter that I felt … Click here to read more