My Practice primarily serves as a tool for the recollection of my own past. It is a deeply personal body of work.

My inspiration for this project came when I was sifting through old photo albums during the summer. Upon first looking at these images I was filled with a warm sense of nostalgia and yearning, my mind flooding with stories from the past.

Yet as quickly as these memories came, they also vanished, I found my self straining to try and remember images that had been in my head moments ago. I realised then that I need to make work about this, something that evokes such a powerful response can’t be ignored.

My memories have become layered, I cannot distinguish one from the other, what really happened and what was a dream. The feeling  when you  you can't remember if something happened, or if you dreamed it into your own reality. That both amazes me and scares me. The more time passes, the more my own memories begin to feel uncertain, shifting into dreams of what might’ve been.

My work aims to communicate the duality of dreamlike disorientation alongside comforting nostalgia. Through my use of collage to create new distorted narratives and thin washes of oil paint and turpentine, I try to create paintings that embody both a sense of calm, but also a sense that things are not quite as they seem. Memories melting away on the canvas surface. 

The three lonely travellers. Three children all facing the viewer. The far left child is dressed as a pirate and is wearing an eye patch and a hat. The middle child wears a long black cape and a bear mask. There is a yellow halo around the middle figures head. The child on the right is wearing a oink dress. expand
'The three lonely travellers', Oil on Canvas, 120 x 180cm, 2021
Two children dressed as pirates
‘Were we Ever Really Here?’ Oil on Canvas, 120 x 150cm, 2020
close up of Childs face with eye patch
Close up
Close up of bow around a Childs neck
Close up of jacket lapels
child holding fathers had
'At The Beach With Dad', Oil on Canvas, 2020
close up of shadow
close up of landscape
close up of landscape
close up
Beach landscape with masked figures running across the composition
‘Teddy Bears Picnic’, Oil on Canvas, 120 x 150cm, 2021
Close up
Close up
Man throwing child into green swimming pool
‘Max and Me’, Oil on Un-stretched canvas , 160 x 140 cm, 2021
Close up of a man
close up of a child
Abstract landscape
'False Rememberings', Oil on Canvas, 50 x 80cm, 2020
Close up
Close up
Artist Bio

I am a  queer artist currently based in Edinburgh. My work aims to explore themes of memory and nostalgia, and attempts to communicate the fragility of what it is to truly remember. My practice primarily serves as a tool for the recollection of my own past.

After Graduating this summer I am moving to Oxford, to work as a graduate in a school whilst furthering my artistic practise. I plan to complete a MFA in painting in the near future.

a self portrait of the artist. A person with short pink hair stares off the canvas
'Alice', Oil on Canvas, 2021

Alice Barker

Memories As Dreams Of The Past
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Painting - BA (Hons)

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