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Iona Hutley's 'essentia'

The artwork currently on show comes at a truly exciting point in Hutley's career, as she continues to explore the possibilities of abstraction in painting. The body of work offers a glimpse into a moment ‘in-between’; an almost unfiltered reaction to the restrictions of the past, and a precursor to the wild, beautiful, uncontrollable possibilities of the future. 

Her work is both an attempt to understand as well as a means to project the intricacies and depths of our intuition, of feeling and viscerality.

Hutley does this by pushing the notion of abstraction with paint and colour to a highly complex level, resulting in a body of work that is uncannily precise and intentional.


There is something incredibly enchanting and esoteric about that which unfolds amongst the layers of texture and paint. The lure of magic is its secret. Its beauty is that all secrets lie within - they merely wait our attempts to perceive them.


What is at first glance a cacophony of colour and mark making, soon becomes something else. As you observe and get closer, you begin to understand what each piece is trying to tell you; the depth of feeling, the good, the bad and the poetic mystery of what lies in between.

essentia (noun)

Pronunciation: /ɪˈsɛnʃə/

The inherent, fundamental nature or essence of something.

  • Example: The essentia of poetry lies in its ability to evoke emotions.

A concentrated extract or essence obtained from a substance.

  • Example: The perfumer used the essentia of roses to create a captivating fragrance.

Origin: Late Middle English: from Latin essentia, from esse 'be'.


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