In conversation with

In Conversation With: Arabella Ross

We are honoured to share with you our interview with British painter and sculptor, Arabella Ross. As part of our "In Conversation With" column, Ross tells us about her artistic inspirations and experiences in India, as well as shares some tricks on selling and engaging with collectors.
25th November 2020 | Image Curators Advisory
The White Barn With The Moon Lady, 2020, Ceramics and Stoneware, 31cm x 26cm x 21cm. Courtesy: The Artist
Arabella, you studied at the Krishnamurti Centre, and then lived and traveled in India. Can you talk more about these experiences, and how they influenced your work?
The influence of the teachings of Jiddu Krishnamurti (1895-1986) a philosopher, speaker, and writer at the tender age of twelve had a profound effect on the way I perceived and thought about life. The spiritual and intellectual ethos suffused the school. I became very curious to visit India. In 1979 on a student exchange with the three Krishnamurti foundations in Bangalore, Madras, and Varanasi, I spent ten months teaching English, traveling, and working in Calcutta. In 1993 I returned to India on an Artist’s residency for three months living with twelve Indian Artists in a village outside Calcutta. I worked intensely and produced over 50 works on Indian handmade paper. My work was influenced by a sense of urgency and complete immersion into another culture through which I was able to discover a sense of my true potential.
What are your paintings about and what inspired you to start working in ceramics?
My oil paintings are inspired by nature, emotions, and memories. They are a language for thinking in paint through an instinctive and energetic powerful love of colour, form and expressive mark-making. The paintings are a reflection of being in the moment, waiting to see what will emerge as each painting works towards capturing a distillation of experience. The images and marks emerge from an “Interior self”. The ceramics studio was next to the painting studio at school. Using clay was encouraged. I became inspired to work with clay at an early age as I could see and feel the excitement that what I made and went into the kiln came out a complete surprise! This intrigued me. I felt compelled to play with forms and to see if the tactile quality of clay could translate into my ideas about making vases using my fingers for marks and the fascination with glaze experimentation for colour spectrums. Ceramics is in the blood! My late father was a sculptor using clay and my mother worked in both earthenware and stoneware creating vessels for the home.

Lady in Her Japanese Dwelling, 2020, Ceramic and Stoneware, 28cm x 26cm x 25cm. Courtesy: The Artist

"Create A Dialogue Within Your Profession."

What’s the best piece of advice you’ve been given in your career as an artist?
Success is not made overnight!
Tell us about your journey of selling art online. What are the platforms that have worked best for you and that you use the most?
Instagram and my website continue to be the best platforms for selling. Potential buyers contact me through the online contact form and bank details are exchanged. Through the contact form, I am able to build up a relationship with my clients.
You Have A Strong Presence On Instagram. Do You Have Any Tips For Our Readers And Fellow Artists On How They Can Improve And Grow Their Profiles On The Platform?
Post meaningful and quality content with writing that shows inspiration and process. Engage with your followers and create a dialogue within your profession.
Are You Working On Any New Projects At The Moment?
A painting commission for a country house and creating a new website. Working on my Ceramic sculptures, and a clay banquet for a combined painting and ceramics exhibition in October 2021.

Arabella Ross

Born in Yorkshire in 1959, Arabella Ross is a professional British painter, ceramicist and sculptor.
Ross was brought up in a creative family and spent years traveling and living in India where her artistic process has been profoundly shaped by the importance of being connected to a true self.

Her fascination with Nature and its relationship with the human spirit have drawn the artist towards an endless research of the unconscious which is strongly echoed across her artistic practice. Inspired by British and American artists, such as Malcolm Morley, Joan Mitchell and Helen Frankenthaler, the artist’s aim is to create work that draws out a strong emotional, psychological or physical response in the viewer. Her oil paintings document the subconscious mind through instinctual, energetic forms, vivid and powerful brushstrokes. The landscape is always a source of inspiration and is at the centre of her artworks.
Ross’s Himalayan and Japanese ceramic sculptures are small worlds that tell stories of wonders and creativity.

The Artist in the painting studio. Courtesy: The Artist.
Communicating a personal vocabulary that marries plastic art with texture, the artist creates dwellings where the viewer is invited into exposed and sunlit interiors, open windows, doors and walls decorated with incised lines, all of which constitute a visual representation of the artist’s inner creativity, imagination, memory and identity.
Arabella Ross has exhibited in India and regularly exhibits in the UK in solo and group exhibitions, and art fairs. Her work has been added to private collections around the world, including Vienna, Verbier, London, Paris, St Tropez, Aix-en-Provence, and Tokyo.
Ross currently lives and works in Hampshire, UK.
Instagram: @arabella_ross_art