Ann Lesley BarTur
The BarTur Award was first established in 2011 with the generous support of Amnon and Armon BarTur in memory of their wife and mother the late Ann Lesley BarTur (1947-1984), a talented British Artist.
Ann loved paint. She loved it so much she literally immersed herself in it. Not her whole body of course but with her hands deep into the slithery stuff and worked it into sculptural shapes united with other materials.
I think I may have been one of Ann’s first patrons in that I bought a sculpture that united paint, metal and wood. She took a round metal plate and worked thick white paint round and round and with the aid of a wooden block built is up into a three dimensional stream of paint that defies gravity through its united structure.
In her later works on paper, paint was still the dominant element, thick and often acting like an adhesive to hold other material. I love my other piece which combines thick paint and a plate of copper. I have it in my house in Cyprus which is famous for its copper. It’s a perfect abstract expression of the unity of place and art…at least for me.
Every day when I come into my office, the first thing that strikes my eye is a drawing by Ann that hangs above my computer.
This painting is of a nude woman done in pastel – it’s angry, passionate and erotic. When Ann was diagnosed with breast cancer, her style of art changed dramatically. She’d been known for abstract art that involved metal and thick daubs of oil paint. Once she realized she was fighting for her life, her art evolved – she went from abstract to figurative art. I see this woman as a representation of Ann herself – full of life, love, anger and sexuality.
The background on which the woman lies is wild streaks of black and green, uninhibited pastel lines. But the body of the woman is curvaceous, with pendulous breasts and covered in glitter. That body exemplified who Ann was; those breasts exemplify what she lost. The passion in this painting reflects everything that Ann was – an artist, a dear friend, a fighter, and a talent whose life was tragically short but lives on in her art and on my wall.