Jonathan Smith goes to the heart of Yorkshire and Northumberland in landscapes show at Village Gallery in York

Trollers Ghyll, by Jonathan Smith

JONATHAN Smith’s exhibition of Landscapes From The Heart Of Yorkshire is running at Village Gallery, Colliergate, York, until March 4.

A self-taught painter based in the Yorkshire Dales, Jonathan paints exclusively in oils and focuses on how the land lies in Yorkshire and Northumberland.

“Art was one of Jonathan’s favourite subjects when he was at Ripon Grammar School, although this was the last time he would receive any formal training,” says gallery owner and curator Simon Main.

“After years as a hobby painter, he turned semi-professional in 2019, since when he has held several exhibitions across Yorkshire region, including in Doncaster, Ilkley, Harrogate, Skipton and Leeds. Last year, he received a Wild Card place on Sky’s Landscape Artist of the Year.”

Spring, Malham Cove, by Jonathan Smith

He is influenced by the 19th century English Romantic painters, the French Barbizon School and the Russian Itinerants, who drew inspiration from nature and sought to capture the beauty of the everyday in the landscapes around them.

In following this style, he adds the concept of “memory painting”, as espoused by American artist John F Carlson. “Once Jonathan has found a scene or motif that inspires, he will sketch and photograph it,” says Simon. “This material is used to outline the final composition in the studio but is then largely abandoned.

“From this point on, the painting is done from memory in the attempt to convey his own feelings directly through the painting. His main focus is to try to eke out the beauty of nature from his surroundings and to show how beauty exists all around us.”

Village Gallery’s opening hours are 10am to 4pm, Tuesday to Saturday.

East Pier At Whitby, by Jonathan Smith