Take a journey across the Heath in twelve oil paintings

The Pond at South End Green, 2021

The Pond at South End Green, 2021 - Credit: Sally Hyman

Artist Sally Hyman takes a journey across Hampstead Heath in twelve oil paintings.

Her solo show Heath Scapes at Burgh House next month celebrates "the beauty and diversity of the Heath".

Dalmation, birch trees

Dalmation, birch trees - Credit: Sally Hyman

Scenes include winter swimmers at the Ladies pond complete with neoprene gloves and woolly hats, London's skyline viewed by a lone figure on a bench on Parliament Hill, a Dalmatian springing onto a carpet of fallen leaves, and winter swimmers at the Men’s Pond.

Hyman said: "The Heath has long been a powerful inspiration for artists from Constable to lesser known artists such as Ernest Stamp in the 1940s and Frances Watts in the 1950s. I see myself as continuing that tradition; my works are both a kind of social history, chronicling a particular time and place and its people at leisure, and a joyful paean to a place that is beloved  by me and so many people -  not a London park but more an oasis of countryside in the city." 

Parliament Hill Skyline by Sally Hyman

Parliament Hill Skyline by Sally Hyman - Credit: Sally Hyman

Hyman works both en plein air and in her studio in Brent. She has lived most of her life within walking distance of the Heath and says no two walks are the same.

"Every walk is a new experience, The Heath is in a sense a contradiction. It is reassuringly unchanging, mercifully protected from development, yet as a sensory experience it offers endless variety for the artist - a new scene from one moment to the next with its natural fluctuations. As the seasons shift, the clouds part, the light changes, the mud dries, the magnolia blossoms fleetingly, a heron appears or a rabbit or, if you’re lucky, a kingfisher, or a woman walking a fox on a lead."

Winter Swimmers Ladies' Pond

Winter Swimmers Ladies' Pond - Credit: Sally Hyman

Although she likes her compositions to work on an abstract level as "arrangements of colour and tone" they are underpinned by skills picked up from life drawing and portraiture classes including most recently at Hampstead School of Art.

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Each is designed to evoke a distinct mood and draw the viewer into its own immersive world.

Heath Scapes runs at the Peggy Jay Gallery, Burgh House from April 20-24.

Sally Hyman paints en plein air on Hampstead Heath

Artist Sally Hyman paints en plein air on Hampstead Heath - Credit: Courtesy of Sally Hyman