It is over forty years since Simon first visited India. Since then he has returned many times to the north and south of the country to travel, paint, explore, and most recently, to volunteer as a teacher of English in a rural school in Uttarakhand.

This is an exhibition of mainly new work alongside a few earlier paintings borrowed from public and private collections. Watercolour is a medium that lends itself to transparency and immediacy. Indian yellow is a beautiful pigment, the colour of turmeric or saffron-infused water. In watercolour Simon uses it to paint the butter lamps in Buddhist gompas, late afternoon sunlight on sandstone temples, reflected sunrise on the surface of India’s holy rivers and the sacred fire ritual of Ganga Aarti, which is performed every evening on the banks of the Ganges.

Simon Pierse (b.1956) is a member and past vice-president of the Royal Watercolour Society, an honorary member of the Australian Watercolour Society and an artist associate of the Alpine Club. Artist residencies include Melbourne Grammar School (1992-3), GAAA, Michigan (1998), Dunmoochin, Melbourne (2007-8 & 2018), FIAF, Abruzzo (2017) and an Artist Fellowship at La Trobe University, Melbourne (2009). His work is in many public collections, including MOMA Machynlleth, University College, London, the National Library of Wales, Heritage Malta, Qingdao Art Museum, China and the Royal Collection.


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