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A scanned section of the original painting 'Fierce Pursuit'
Gemma Frisius's Arithmeticae practicae methodus facilis (1540) , Paulo Uccello's 'Perspective' (1397 – 1475) Abbey Walmsley's mapping for 'Race Of Souls' (2010)

Critical Review

Abbey Walmsley was regarded as a contemporary Master artist at the age of 23 by some of the leading galleries in Europe. At 24 her work was included in a major London exhibition 'The Art Of Living' and shown alongside other known master artists including Picasso, Rembrandt, Monet, Lowry and Renoir. But this was just the beginning.

As she pursued her artistic philosophy, Abbey Walmsley's journey has enabled her to develop her originality into incredible works that are unparalleled in terms of technical execution and subject capture. Her original artworks are considered works of 'Dynamic Realism', a term used to describe the new territory of realism that her persistence has unlocked. It is a realism that handles the elements that construct reality (form, colour, perspective, motion, psychology) with a consideration and application that sets it apart from contemporary 'photorealism' and 'hyper-realism'.

Dynamic Realism has become Abbey Walmsley's central philosophy that enables her to painstakingly produce 3 – 5 works a year. She works directly with her patrons, feeding their hunger for unique works of high craftsmanship that deliver fascination and cause a sense of ore in viewers. The relationship she develops with her patrons has fuelled great works that capture ecological, historical and cultural subjects.

Each work has a rawness to it divorced from ideology, conventions and expectations shown in past realist depictions. The expectations held for each artwork originate from Abbey Walmsley's drive and desire to keep learning and developing her skills to their limits, she pushes forward with a deepening curiosity toward what the human mind is capable of. It is from this traditional creative space, unencumbered by commercial considerations, that works are developed. This has created an understanding of reality and how to capture it in such a way that its resonance becomes powerfully magnetic.

Han's Holbein The Younger portrait of Sir Thomas More (1497 - 1543) courtesy of the Frick Collection, New York, Abbey Walmsley's 'Fierce Pursuit', oil on Canvas.

This is an artist in pursuit of truth, personal development, comprehension of motion and psychology that produce the connective energy and resonance that make up the real. Dynamic Realism is reflective of European mathematics following the Renaissance that uncovered the eternal shapes of geometry and became a science that tracked the movements and changes of the real world.

It is a realism that is changing peoples understanding of what is possible within the realist genre, it focusses observers on the idea of time, movement, nature of the real and the nature of human perception.

There is an energy within Abbey Wamsley's works that is generated by her acute understanding of the subjects and their environments in combination with the use of a technique that brings life to the canvas and masks the mathematical mapping beneath.

The soul of her art is driven forward with each piece of contemplated execution, energy is something that can be mapped and captured. Dynamic Realism is a realism for the now, it captures the mind, the imagination, the senses.

Abbey Walmsley is encouraged further by the potential of what Dynamic Realism is capable of, the complex illusions to understand, magical resonances to be conjured and celebrated on the surface of paper and canvas. Comprehension and portrayal have reached a new height, the purpose of realism has been redefined as the wonderment of the real has been reactivated.

Reviewed by Sophie Sharp 2015

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