Minna George, born in 1981, is a London based artist. Graduating from Chelsea College of Art and Design in 2003, she continued her studies with an MA from Kingston University in European Fine Art Practice and Film.
‘Legends’ artist statement
Drawing and sketching has been integral behind Minna’s paintings. The instantaneous mark making with charcoal, graphite or ink on paper is the unique process that records an instant gesture and expression provoked by subject matter insight.
Minna began her artistic career creating hundreds of observational sketches, depicting landscape, seascapes and figures. Transferring them onto canvas compositions in a traditional sense and then proceeding with painting over them, resulted often with having a sketch and a painting based on that secondary sketch.
“Sketching is the most honest representation of a true artistic emotion, captured and sealed in the very moment where vision, inspiration and thought collide.”
“The energy behind an initial sketch is never the same when transferred or resized onto a different surface by hand, resulting in a replacement sketch of a sketch!”
Minna believes that an important element is lost during this transition, hence our desire to seek out and why we value the ‘study sketch’ of famous pieces of art often as much as the painting they inspired.
After many years of creative practice and experimentation Minna arrived at the conclusion that the initial sketch and drawing should be built within the final painting. This way she feels she is creating a ‘full circle’ of artistic technique around her subject matter, beginning with the sketch and never losing it. The original sketch is preserved by the process of enlarging and printing directly onto a unique plexiglass composite – a complex and costly process, which ensures the strongest and highest quality smooth finish. The choice of plexiglass composite and not paper is to symbolise the strength of the sketch rather than its fragility. Minna created this complex yet exciting process of using different media, including drawing, printing, painting and sculpting, to achieve the glacial effect of her subjects that has taken many months of experimentation and analysis. The results of which, are highly defined by texture and super glazed high gloss finishes, portraits of the world’s legendary summits.
The Balkan mountain range is ever close to Minna’s heart, she grew up trekking and exploring them as well as spending significant time at her family’s cabin deep in the Rilla mountains. From her numerous travels in the Alps and Russia she gained even deeper understanding of different terrains and their folds. Inspired by atmospheric extremes and conversations with significant mountaineers who have climbed and photographed summits such as Everest and Puncak Jaya she gained valuable additional insight and information to support her paintings of these epic summits.
A beautiful representation of several fine art mediums combined with modern technology to withstand the test of time. Minna believes that with this method of painting she has successfully ensured the preservation of the painting’s creative journey onto one surface.
“I finally feel that the trail from finding a subject and sketching it instantaneously, to its complete art formation will now be permanently saved as a one-off original artwork.”
Minna is an internationally renowned artist, painting for the last 25 years.A graduate of both the Chelsea College of Art and Kingston University, she holds a Masters with Distinction in Fine Art.
Working from her London studio since 2000 she has mastered a signature painting style recognised by many of her collectors. Applying a painstaking process of multi layering to her work Minna’s paintings often take months of fine tuning before release, with a finished work that could include up to 30 layers of paint, created using the finest of pigments. The ‘Legends’ series is a mixture of techniques and materials used in a methodical yet complex way in order to create their unique body and finish.
Her work is housed in many international private collections such as the homes of Will Smith, the late Stanley Seager and Dame Penelope Keith to name a few. Minna won the Arts Council young talent 1st prize in 1998 and her work was shortlisted for the National Portrait Gallery in 2002 as well as being displayed at the Museum of Modern Art Kuwait.
Some of Minna’s paintings can even be tracked now on the secondary markets of Christies and Sotheby’s often as a part of a collection sale or a charitable cause. She is aware of many of today’s budding problems and will always support a charity which is close to her heart.