“I paint and draw outside whenever I can and am most concerned with the elemental, with the effects of weather and light and the changing seasons. I use a variety of techniques and materials and the work is a mixture of place, memory and imagination.”
Maggie O’Brien’s work crosses many different disciplines experimenting with processes and ways of working appropriate to the subject, and the ideas she wishes to communicate. Her Cornish landscapes tend to be intuitive and expressive, a direct and joyful response to walks along the coastal paths, and across the farms and Moorland. She is a frequent visitor to the Sicily Isles and spends many weeks on Tresco painting and teaching here. A large part of her work focuses on the birds, animals and insects that live alongside us. She is passionate about the concept of re-wilding and re-foresting parts of the UK. Living in a remote part of Cornwall brings her close to the natural world, she is mindful of its vulnerability and our collective responsibility towards it.
Alongside her landscapes much of her work focuses on vanishing species of moths, butterflies and birds and her exquisite anatomical paintings highlight the plight of these vanished species. More recently she has been working on a series on intimate paintings exploring human relationships.
Maggie O’Brien gained a degree in English at Warwick University before graduating with a BA from Camberwell School of Art, followed by an MA in drawing at Wimbledon. She moved to Cornwall from London in 2006 and works from her studio on the Penwith peninsular near Land’s End. She is a tutor at Newlyn School of Art and has shown in exhibitions throughout the UK and her work is in collections all over the world.
Recently Maggie has gained national recognition for her paintings and artistic projects which are created to draw awareness of the increase in marine waste, man-made developments in important natural habitats and other environmental changes.