"My paintings are places where I can lose myself within the inner conversations that emotionally torment me…”
Lesley Oldaker is a British artist who grew up and has since returned to live and work near Bath, UK.
Oldaker initially studied and qualified as a Fellow of the Institute of Biomedical Scientist, working in hospital pathology departments around the country for many years.
She followed her interest in art and painting throughout her medical career by regularly attending various art courses and art-groups. It was her enjoyment of life art classes, where her fascination of the human form and conditions arose and later led her to return to art college to study full-time.
A move to Zurich, Switzerland for 7 years in 2011, was where her journey as an emerging artist progressed. Lesley was invited to a fully funded artist residency in China in 2012. The amazing experience and connections made during the residency led to more opportunities and the start of her current professional career as a visual artist.
Oldaker’s work is all about how we see ourselves and others within society.
She has developed her style to successfully express her interpretations of the complex interactions of people in our continually changing urban environments.
Inspiration and ideas evolve from events seen in the media and in society in general that evoke strong emotional responses within the artist and with further exploration and expression of these responses, the creative process evolves.
Perceptive observations of human behaviour, together with her own personal experiences, enhance the emotive narratives of her paintings and often communicate a common sense of displacement, a question of belonging and relevance within all our shared spaces.
Oldaker's paintings aim to connect to the viewers’ personal lived experiences and encourage them to explore and question their own inner emotions and reactions, which hopefully will engage them to feel that they are part of the life within the painting.
"My process originates from drawing, photographic and observational studies of large public spaces where there is a continual sense of movement within the urban landscape. These studies enable me to abstract the essence of emotion, form, space and colour for the paintings. Painterly mark making and using a limited colour pallet helps me evoke a further suggestion of mood and place, encouraging the viewer to explore deeper and feel drawn into the painting."
Oldaker has been painting full time for 12 years now, achieving various art awards, features and opportunities during that period. She’s exhibited in London, Zurich, New York, Paris, NewDelhi, Florence, Stockholm, Bratislava and China, and has work in private and corporate collections across the world.
She works from studios in her garden and welcomes commissions and collaborations; recently working with actor/director Thomas Sadoski on a stage painting for a play in NYC, with Ewers Brothers Productions /Ken Burns on a PBS documentary about youth mental health issues in the US and on various worldwide book and album cover collaborations.
CV Born in UK
Represented by Aura Fine Art Galleries, UK
Artique Galleries, UK
Buckingham Fine Art Publishing, UK
Chimera Gallery, Ireland
Clifton Fine Art Gallery, UK
Cotswold Contemporary Galleries, UK
Hope Gallery, UK
Kai Galleries, Canada
Great Banyan Art Co., New Delhi, India
Member of ArtCan , London. www.artcan.org
2022 SWA prize, London (shortlisted)
2022 Bath Society of Artists Prize (2 shortlisted)
2020 Holly Bush Painting Prize 2020. London ( Finalist )
2018 Bath Open Art Prize. (Peoples Choice)
2016 Winter Pride Art Award. London (Runner-Up)
2013 Full invited Artist Residency at Da Wang Cultural Highland, Shenzhen, China
2012-2017 Higher Diploma Fine Art Painting (OCA / University of the Creative Arts, UK)
2011 Foundation Diploma in Art and Design, Bath College/UAL, Bath, UK (Distinction)
2011-1204 Life art lessons under artist Alex Zwalen (alexzwalen.ch)
2006-2011 Life art lessons under artist Jackie Harding (jackieharding.com)
2004-2006 OCN art courses in painting and drawing
1991 FIMLS Medical Biochemistry
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