Vanessa Garwood


Born in 1982, Vanessa’s art first focused on portraiture and in developing a language of oil painting through both commissioned work and her own subjects. These themes ranged from narrative storytelling, male nudes, dancers, also performance collaboration with choreographers. In 2020 her practice shifted to include acrylics and ceramics, working in these new mediums to build a world where more personal themes could be explored. These paintings are fragments of the artists memories and imagination, lost between good and bad, light and dark, part nightmare part satire. Vanessa uses humour to express the despair and compassion that she feels for the light and dark all around us. They take an unapologetic empathetic look at what it felt like for her to grow up in London. Stripping back to use only black and white helped her to access a more instinctive and emotional language of painting.

Currently working in London on a combination of projects, both portraits and other – building up towards exhibitions with her Black and White series.

CURRENTLY SHOWING – OHSH Projects, ‘Poison’ Group Show, London, until 09.12.23

UPCOMING – Hauser & Wirth, ‘Present Tense’ Group Show, Somerset, 27.01.24 – 28.04.24

Selected exhibitions / performance

OHSH Projects, group show ‘Poison’ 2023

Flowers Gallery, group show ‘Small is beautiful’ 2022

Flowers Gallery, group show ‘Small is beautiful’ 2021

National Portrait Gallery, group show ‘BP award’ 2020

Royal Opera House, Paul Hamlyn Hall, performance ‘Dancing Lines’ 2019

National Portrait Gallery, group show ‘BP award’ 2019

National Portrait Gallery, group show ‘BP award’ 2018

Rook and Raven Gallery, solo show ‘And is it True’ 2015

Currently exhibiting ceramics at OHSH projects ‘Poison’, London until 9.12.23 Upcoming Group Show Hauser & Wirth, Somerset, 'Present Tense' opening 27the January 2023

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