Alison Street Artist in Lockdown

By Mary-Anne Bartlett on 7th May 2020

I am keeping myself busy in Zambia during this time painting although its taken me a while to get round to doing anything as my head’s been all over the place since January.

I’ve been down to the Lower Zambezi a couple of times, I love the bush and we are so lucky to still be able to get about, there’s no lockdown as such here in Zambia although all the lodges are closed so its very quiet.

You know my favourite charity is Conservation Lower Zambezi?  I raise funds for them every year through my art.  I’ve just spent time with the CLZ people and they are struggling with fundraising at the moment with all the lodges closed so I’ve decided to do a small painting every day to sell for $100, first come first served basis.  So I’m busy organizing the logistics of that, I’ll put the paintings up on Instagram and Facebook, it will be interesting to see how that goes.  I was supposed to be in London for my solo exhibition right now and that was also to raise funds for CLZ, so I will do this instead.

My Wild dog painting came about through a commission.  Long story, this couple gave me a photo of four of the dogs that they had taken some time ago and wanted a painting. I don’t really like doing commissions so tried to put them off by saying I would have to add another dog, couldn’t have four, etc etc but they wouldn’t be put off.  Anyway I had endless trouble with the background cos normal backgrounds are not really my thing. So after three attempts and hating them all I decided to go with my gut and put up what I felt was happening in the world today with wildlife slowly creeping back into our towns and cities.  I wanted to leave something to the imagination so not too definitive.  I was quite thrilled with the outcome, loving the colours too.  Honestly, it was quite weird the way my brush almost went its own way without much thought process from me, it was like a spiritual moment.  I know, it sounds a bit wacky!!

It turned out that the couple who commissioned the painting didn’t want it after all because of the background, anyway I’ve had other enquiries to buy it.  Not sure of the title of the work though, I can’t very well call it ‘Corona Dogs’ can I?