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Artist Spotlight: Georgia Hayes

Two of Georgia's works alongside the Curator of the Mostyn Award in 2019


British painter Georgia Hayes (Born 1946, Aberdeen, Scotland) was a student of Roy Oxlade from 1977 to 1982. She has been shortlisted for numerous awards including the John Moores Painting Prize and most recently the Mostyn Award, and is currently represented by the Paul Stolper Gallery in London. 


Left: Big Cats in Brussels / Right: Blaming Eve, Oil on Canvas, Georgia Hayes (b.1946) / Bridgeman Images


1. What is your earliest memory of an artwork and who was it by? 

I can’t be sure about the earliest as there were paintings and books of paintings at home but when I went to the Tate for the first time I was stunned by Matisse’s Snail!

2. You have spent a lot of time in Ibiza over the years, did the island inspire your practice?

Well it served as a warning.  My parents had a house on the island and I met many artists living an idyllic life but it seemed to distract them. I decided never to stay too long.


Left: Fish Shed 1 / Right: Western Dreaming, Oil on Canvas, Georgia Hayes (b.1946) / Bridgeman Images


3. You were a student of Roy Oxlade from 1977-1982? What was the most important bit of advice he gave you in terms of painting and your technique?

The essential advice was to disregard academic practice and techniques and trust in intuitive responses to the things I was painting.

4. What is your favorite time of day to be in your studio? 

 I like to paint from the late afternoon until 9pm. When I am alone I often continue into the night. 


Left: Hola to the Albas (Ancient and Modern) / Right: Showing Dogs (Crufts), Oil on Canvas, Georgia Hayes (b.1946) / Bridgeman Images


5. Horses often appear in your work, why?

I have horses so they are as much in my life as family, cats, birds and other animals all of which I like to paint.

6. You recently exhibited with Sophie Barber. How did that come about?

Sophie did her BA at Hastings Art School where the head of painting was Jeb Haward. In the 1990s, he went to the Tunbridge Wells summer schools run by Roy Oxlade with Kath Thompson, Rose Wylie and Brian Watterson. The director of Niagara Falls was interested in the connections he felt he saw in our work.


Left: Once in the Saddle / Right: Caging a Cat, Oil on Canvas, Georgia Hayes (b.1946) / Bridgeman Images


7. You were selected for the Mostyn Award. Tell us about the works that you chose to submit.

They are recent paintings which hang well together. Both paintings have the artist/viewer looking in on the scene.  Big cats in Brussels is the latest in an ongoing interest in extinction and human alienation from the wild.   
Trying It On is from watching my daughter shopping for clothes. I liked the zingy orange and the mirrors everywhere in the changing rooms.

8. What artist has had the greatest impact on you? 

Equally Giotto, Velasquez, Manet, Picasso, Matisse (and his writings) late Guston. I hope that’s not too many, but it's hard to single only one out!


Left: Singing Toghter / Right: Rainforest with Orchid and Crocodile, Oil on Canvas, Georgia Hayes (b.1946) / Bridgeman Images


Thanks to Georgia for answering our questions.

Discover more of her her work in the Bridgeman archive


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