Stuart Smith is an observer and explorer, creating artworks that prompt viewers to slow down and look deeper at the beauty of a single object.
A professional oil painter, specialising in studio craft and traditional painting techniques, he has a knack for reinvigorating the objects he sees by painting them with great precision. Stuart uses traditional methods of painting which has strongly influenced his style, using simplified composition, layered painting processes and polished gesso surfaces.
He draws inspiration from found objects, collectible items and anything that catches his eye. "I love discovering odd and quirky things and happiest wandering antique stalls, op shops or beach combing." By close observation, he explores the object much like travelling - weaving in between crevices and brushing past tiny corners.
Toy boxes are a reoccurring theme in his current work. A nostalgic ode to treasured 'collectibles', sees Stuart reminisce upon the prized value of toys as a child and the importance of keeping his toy boxes in mint condition. The attention to detail in his artworks reflect the strict care that were to be taken with his toys. However with a youthful, witty spirit, much like the attitude in his paintings, Stuart sees the playful qualities of the toy box as equal to the toy inside.
Stuart works mainly with oil paint and his favourite surface to work on is a gesso panel. His disciplined approach to observation is evident in his painting. Often working on small scale canvases, he hones in on the small gestural marks that add to the realism and quality of his paintings.
Before moving to Sydney, Stuart Smith attained a Fine Art (Painting and Printmaking) degree from Bretton Hall University, Leeds and worked closely as an apprentice with British artist Robert McKellar. After leaving his hometown of Kent, he has travelled the world extensively, building his repertoire as an artist and art teacher.