Louise Jannetta

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAExperimenting and exploring are very much key to the work of artist Louise Jannetta.

She loves nothing more than developing series of work that have a single theme, but are created from a different approach and media.

It’s trees that are taking centre stage in her art at the moment and she admits that her paintings are so distinctive that she has become known as ‘the tree lady’.

“It wasn’t something I set out to achieve but I am taking it as a positive,” she said.

A self-taught artist, Louise is now a full time professional, and the walls and surfaces of her large studio in Buxton confirm the passion she has for the woodlands of the Peak District.

Her trademark pictures are everywhere in a variety of forms, watercolours, oils, etchings, collagraphs, pastels, even feltwork.

“The series may appear disparate but it is exploring all the diverse textures and qualities achieveable with various mediums.”

The vast space she has in which to work means she can have a number of projects on the go at one time.

Dressed in paint-spattered overalls, with her long dark hair fastened into a plait, she tells me that she is happiest if she is working and that what I can see is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to the ideas she has in her head.

“These are simply the ones I have managed to get out so far but each piece of work allows me to develop a new technique and is a step forward.

“The best bit is to love all of the different possibilities. There is not – and should not be – any purist attitudes to medium or subject. We can be as pretty (purely decorative) or thought-provoking as we like.

“I do not want to be constrained to one style or particular subject or philosophy; it is the fulfilment of a unique and good idea that is most important.”

The mother of two teenagers quite openly admits that she is painting to earn a living and that she has no time for anyone who sniffs at her lack of purism.

She is not going to be pushed around and told what to do just to get her work exhibited so she accepts she may find it harder to get into galleries.

“I am a bit blokey about it and I am going to stick to my guns. I am an artist with a wish to be creative – not a product.

“I am still very dependent on the need to sell my work and so my paintings need to appeal to the audience I have at the moment and are therefore decorative but they have integrity and are full to the brim with curiosity and ideas.”

Louise is justly proud of what she produces and, as she is one of the most talked about artists in the region at the moment, she has clearly got it right and it is unlikely she will find it hard to get gallery space.

The artist moved to Buxton ten years ago and at the time was running an upholstery business. Textiles had pretty much been her life up until then but she had always been a keen artist.

She was accepted into St Martins when she was 18, but spurned the academic life to work in the family upholstery firm.

“I suppose I was a bit of an idiot or maybe it was just the arrogance of youth thinking I didn’t need to do that then. Life took over of course and it is only in the last few years that I have been able to develop my work as I am now.”

It was the High Peak Artists’ group, which was then based in Buxton’s Pump Room, which first gave her gallery space and she moved with them into the Pavilion Gardens gallery.

“It gave me confidence and pushed me on so I am very grateful for the support I had,” she said.

She is now a member of the Peak District Artisans and is heavily involved in the Buxton Fringe Festival. She was part of a team who organised the Buxton Art Trail. She holds workshops at her studio and will stage her winter open studio exhibition in October.

Her work can be seen at various galleries around the country including Opus at Ashbourne.

Go to http://www.louisejannetta.co.uk and click on her blogspot for all the latest news and information.