8th to 25th September 2018

The Malthouse Gallery, Town Mill, Lyme Regis, Dorset, DT7 3PU

Open 10.30-4.30pm each day

Curated by Deborah Wood, The Art Room

Valerie Barden was born in Buckinghamshire in 1938; she studied at Yeovil College of Art and later read Art History with the Open University. She has been exhibiting professionally since 1994 and a number of her paintings are held in the Bridgeman Art Library.

Barden’s work fits into the genre known as paintings of ‘Modern Life’ first explored at the end of the C19 and beginning of the C20. Although painted in a figurative manner, the qualities of abstraction and flatness specific to modern painting and the subject matter place them in contemporary context.

This group of paintings are all about contemporary figures in different public, indoor spaces, all there for the purpose of looking at things.

People in galleries, is a subject which has been treated by various artists in the past, which may have been in her subconscious, but she says she came to the subject simply by sitting for long periods in art galleries (and shopping centres) and thinking of pictures she could make of people standing or sitting fairly still in front of static paintings and objects, of the correspondence between viewer and exhibits, or  simply figures as contrasting shapes against interesting architecture.

These shapes, or ‘disegno’ in painting are her main interest, together with the ever present challenge of making the colour ‘work’.


Exhibits In The Wallace Collection    2017    38x46cm


Pink Room Wallace Collection    2017    30x40cm


Red Rooms Wallace Collection    2017    38x46cm


Gallery Roanoake V.A.    2016    30x24cm

In The Wallace Collection    2017    60x80cm


In Copenhagen National Gallery    2016    40x60cm


Greeny Blue Dulwich 1    2015    30x40cm


The 17th Century Room Copenhagen National Gallery    2016    40x60cm


Escalator In The Galleries Shopping Centre    2005    122x82cm


In Dulwich Art Gallery    2015    80x60cm


Crossed Lines The Galleries Shopping Centre    2005    82x122cm

Looking Through Dulwich Art Gallery 1    2015    40x30cm


Looking Through Dulwich Art Gallery 2    2015    40x30cm


National Gallery Washington    2005    46x56cm


Stairway To Level 2 Washington National Gallery    2006    122x82cm


Stairway To Level 3 Washington National Gallery    2006    122x82cm