Peggy Morley’s prime motivation in her work is colour. Her aesthetic involves the transformation of everyday objects through her unique perception. Working from life, the process of applying paint or wax undertakes an energy directed by the medium melded with artistic decisions on levels of both the conscious and subconscious. This process is both visual and physical as illustrated in the bold brushwork, strong colours and dynamic compositions of her work. This allows her to create a fresh sense of reality that reflects its source in the natural world but does not strive to replicate it. Her work draws the viewer into sharing her own vision. Peggy Morley has trained in painting, drawing and sculpture at the Ottawa School of Fine Arts, Ottawa, Ontario, the Banff School of Fine Arts, Banff, Alberta, Queen’s University, Kingston, Ontario and R & F Encaustics, Kingston, NY
Building on many successful years of painting in oil, Morley has discovered the rich potential of the encaustic method of painting. Originally used in the preservation of mummies in 100-300 AD this type of painting has seen a resurgence in recent years starting with Jasper Johns in the 1950s. The hot beeswax is applied to a rigid wood surface and bonded using heat. The quick drying time of wax, relative malleability of the surface and the depth of pigmentation allows for an exciting and endless exploration of mark making including experimenting with layering, texturing, scraping, incising and colouring.
Her florals are inspired by flowers she selects for their vibrant colour and interesting shapes. Not essential to physical survival, the study of flowers can enliven our spiritual selves. Following in a strong tradition of still life painting and influenced by the work of Vincent Van Gogh, Morley’s work is a passionate, colourful exploration of the beauty and joy of nature and of life.
Photo of Peggy Morley by Raymond Vos