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Highgate Gallery - Art Exhibition: Penny Elder - Beyond Confinement

  • Friday 10 September 2021
at Fellowship House.
Semi-abstract paintings of landscapes inspired by Scottish countryside. Elder uses striking colours applied in deepening layers to give expression to hope for renewal through the natural world.

Penny Elder’s exhibition, ‘Beyond Confinement’, gives expression to her feelings during the past year or more of lockdown and the consequent longing for social connection again.  Her experience of this troubled time is depicted in a series of acrylic paintings and collages of ‘Lockdown’ and a series of screenprints entitled ‘Together Again’ and ‘Closer’. 

The theme of ‘Beyond Confinement’ in her printed images is accompanied by colourful abstract and semi-abstract oil paintings of imagined landscapes.  Her use of striking colours applied in deepening layers on the canvas gives rise to a hope for future renewal from the natural world.  These fantasised landscapes are inspired by the Scottish countryside with which Penny has become familiar over more than thirty years.  She has a studio close to the coast in south-west Scotland where she produced many of the screenprints conceived during lockdown. 

Some of her landscapes and abstracts are full of movement and exuberance while others are quieter, more peaceful and reflective.  Titles such as Rebirth, Out There, What will Emerge, Connecting and Seeing Beyond, describe images which are looking at the future and the importance of connectedness.  Penny enjoys the contrast of oil painting and printmaking which lead to very different images.  Her layering technique in both mediums is a strong characteristic of her approach.

This exhibition comes at a time when the restrictions of quarantine are being lessened and people are able to meet up again, although still facing a somewhat unknown and uncertain future.  The importance of close relationships has been uppermost in Penny’s mind during the pandemic as is illustrated in her exhibited work.

Apart from participating in many group exhibitions over the years, this is Penny’s ninth solo exhibition in London.  She is a retired psychoanalytical psychotherapist who has lived and worked in Muswell Hill for nearly 50 years and who has painted all her life.  She has a studio with Collage Arts in Wood Green and has had annual Open Studio weekends in the Chocolate Factory and Artspace 3 for twenty years.

See more of Penny’s work at; and instagram@pennyelder. 

Highgate Gallery open Tues-Fri 1-5pm, Sat 11am-4pm, Sun 11am-5pm; closed Mon.

11 South Grove, London N6 6BS      Tel: 020 8340 3343      Admission free

Exhibition continues until 23 Sept.

Fellowship House

136a Willifield Way
NW11 6YD    (map)

The hall at Fellowship House has a stage and seating for up to 85 people theatre-style. It is also ideal for children's or family parties. It has a well equipped new kitchen. For bookings call Elizsabeth Kocen on 020 8455 9000 or email her at

Highgate Gallery