About P. F.

Biography of Pat Fairhead

A Matter of Light…

Form from motion, sparkling and luminous.

Artist Pat Fairhead has spent decades capturing the beauty of what is all around us, from the stark and primeval majesty of Arctic glaciers, to the rhapsodic colours and textures of the Muskoka landscape, to the lush, heady beauty of England’s Sissinghurst gardens, and the compelling, hypnotic nature of Haida Gwaii.

She records nature, in its myriad contexts and colours, from calm, deep wells of secluded beauty, to cascading images shaped by the forces of wind, water and ice.

“I was born in Hull, Yorkshire, England, and came to Canada at the age of ten. I fell in love with the Canadian landscape. My life is first my art, but also camping, canoe tripping, hiking, photographing, sketching and drawing – all to take back to the studio. The Arctic, vast bare, loaded, powerful, soaring black rock face, glaciers hundreds of feet high bursting into the sea, desolation, isolation, a million miles of vacancy. Always I have been fascinated by water, dipping the paddle into the lake or the sea, icebergs, waterfalls. The exquisite sensation of being in a place where I can say to myself, ‘I may be the only person who has ever stopped here’.

I’ve been nine times to the high Arctic, paddled the west coast of British Columbia, camped in the Amazon rainforest, hiked the back country of Australia. I’ve done Namibia, Botswana, South Africa, Egypt, Europe, New Zealand and on and on. I am known as an innovator, a colourist, always pushed the edge, to see what I could do. I love transparent vibrant colour, beautiful papers and big sizes. The thrill and challenge of painting a five-foot piece of paper is my idea of cloud nine.”