Serena Rowe is a Scottish painter of landscapes, interiors, and still lifes. She studied at Chelsea College of Art & Design, Edinburgh University and the Florence Academy of Art where she underwent classical training in painting and drawing. She is currently attending the Drawing Year at the Prince’s Drawing School.
In 1997 Serena was awarded the Royal Glasgow Institute Exhibition prize involving a solo show at the RGI’s Kelly Gallery in Glasgow. Serena exhibited at the 2007 summer season at Glyndebourne Opera Festival, East Sussex.
“I had always wanted to paint people but when I couldn’t find anyone who would sit for me I started to find things that would: pieces I found around me in my studio, in my grandmother’s house, in the woods, or brought in by the tide on the shore. My foraging resulted in a cuckoo’s nest of characters. These things - random belongings of humans and nature - have memories, meanings and characters - just as people do. They had their stories to tell as well. And so I began to paint their portraits.”
“It can be an object’s shape and form that catch my eye and I impose human characteristics onto them I suppose; a sensual curve of a cup handle, a mischievous edge of a knife, a laughing jug. I see them as individuals, and just as humans behave differently on their own and in groups, so too do these objects when brought together under one canvas. The canvas becomes the plane for them to exist in and converse with one another.”
“I mostly work from life and occasionally from drawings and memory. I always try to capture the essence of my subject whether it be pinned butterflies, a Chinese bowl or that night by the sea. Because once in paint they have permanence.”
Serena Rowe, August 2007