Wendy Smith continues to work more and more in the landscape, finding inspiration exploring places that are on the edge of changing environments. The experience, both psychological and emotive, refers to the sense of place and the experience of immersion in landscapes that are pre-selected. The exploration includes topographical elements, textural surface, materiality and weathering, combined with a process-led practice of placing and leaving canvases in the river. This practice enables engagement with tidal flow, movement of sediment on the river floor, that impacts and changes the canvases over time and the past connection having previously lived on a houseboat in mudflat areas.
Wendy has a curiosity with ‘edgeland’ areas or the overlap where natural wild spaces, untouched by man, meet the more contained and managed areas. Also, the spaces and edges where land and sea or rivers meet, the wasteland and transitional spaces created between rural and urban areas. These spaces often neglected, liminal areas become areas of fascination and a rich source of inspiration. Working with the materials in the landscape E.g. mud and vegetation combined with the application of pigments on raw canvas, submerging the canvases in tidal and non-tidal rivers to absorb and directly respond to the essence, atmosphere and materiality of place. Paintings develop from these distressed canvases, exploring the fluidity and the ebb and flow of tidal changes.
Photography is also key to her practice being more conceptual with collecting information of place, spatial considerations, visual perceptions and reflective sentiments.