Charles Harris stages first solo exhibition in Britain in a decade

The globally-renowned classical painter discusses how using traditional fine art techniques sets his works apart from the rest.

Globally-renowned classical painter Charles Harris is staging his first exhibition in Britain in over a decade.

Described as ‘the lone voice in the wilderness for traditional art’, the artist is showcasing a lifetime of his work at Abercairny Estate in Perthshire.

Harris has followed in the footsteps of the old masters and is one of few artists today specialising in the classical style using centuries-old forgotten skill.

He said his major new show ‘Charles Harris New Traditional Art’ is a rare chance to see an old genre in a new light.

He told STV News: “The classical influence is that the object is three dimensional to start with. It is all about making contact with nature and human nature. It reflects reality.

“I’m very happy with this opportunity as it’s perfect for showing traditional Scottish landscapes and classical traditional portraits.

“This exhibition includes new, unseen local landscape works from what may still be one of the most beautiful natural places in the world.”

Anna Moray Parker, who owns the venue, said she is delighted to help put Harris’s works on show.

“It’s all about the light. He paints in oils and he uses techniques of old masters starting from the Renaissance.

“That’s his great passion, those are his heroes from 500 years ago.”

The Royal Academy medal-winning painter has exhibited across the world to great acclaim.

A huge poster of one of his paintings was recently displayed in a Madrid railway station.

His innovative landscapes are captured, not from a camera image in a studio, but from real life in the outdoors and in all weathers.

He said: “If you don’t work from nature, you don’t get that dialogue – because nature speaks directly to you and through that process you can begin to start recording it.

“That rigid set of disciplines, working directly from life, making sure you get it as close as you can humanely get it, raises the standard and that’s what great art was about.

“It was about having high standards in every aspect of the work.”        

Anna added: “He’s on the river or on the moor in any weather and that’s what come across that honesty.

“It’s an incredibly difficult thing to take an easel and to take a huge canvas and all the materials outside each and every day for months at a time. That’s a massive challenge.

“He’s a very strong and determined person. He battles with the elements.”

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