Ruth Spencer is a British painter, who is currently living and working in Birmingham, UK. Spencer’s paintings explore the notion of recording transient moments and how these moments are perceived and interpreted through different eyes.
Light and Shadow
Spencer’s works explore the effects of natural and artificial light on spaces and the way in which light alters our perception of said space. The way we interpret the things that we see is based on previous personal experience and so natural fleeting changes, like the play of light and shadow on an object, are subconsciously dismissed by our brain. Returning these light compositions to the foreground of our vision and consciousness is Spencer’s aim.
Usually, Spencer works from direct observation of her subject although at times she does work from memory, recalling how specific locations looked at different times of day, in different lights. In her ‘Night Light’ series, Spencer uses her memories of the shadows cast on industrial spaces by the unnatural street lights as inspiration for her work. The vertiginous shapes caused by the light and shadow make the paintings all the more unsettling.
Spencer has exhibited extensively across the UK and further afield, in Italy, France and Spain. She has been involved with setting up a number of artist-led studio spaces in Birmingham and at present works with eleven other artists in a studio in the city.