Artist in Focus - Hilary Armstrong


Born in Barbados in 1959, Hilary Armstrong grew up alongside three siblings. A reserved and shy child, she was always happiest drawing or playing by herself. Educated in both Barbados and England, Hilary studied art at school and took Summer classes at Edinburgh College of Art and Edinburgh Printmaking Studio where she studied Etching and Printmaking

In 1977 she began working as a batik artist with Barbados Batik and in 1981 she opened her own studio. Here she was able to experiment with other fabrics and explore hand painting, stencilling and lino printing. She also began to sew and quilt batik cushions and bedspreads. In 1993 she designed batiks for ‘Caribelle Batik’ in St Lucia and St Kitts.

Later, she got into painting with acrylic and watercolours, mostly flowers and birds but also landscapes with fields and trees. She was inspired by what she could see through her studio window. Hilary’s work is fluid, she switches from one medium to the next, always trying to produce something new and interesting. For her, the act of creating is a key part of her process.

Her recent work includes charcoal, pastels and inks. From paper she has begun to work with canvas, enjoying the physical act of putting the paint on the canvas. She next hopes to try her hand at painting raw ceramics and some mosaic work.

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