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Painting (MA)

Abigail Hampsey

Originally from Lancaster, Abigail completed her BA in Fine Art at Newcastle University in July 2019 and is currently completing her MA in Painting at the Royal college of art. She was awarded the Basil Alkazzi scholarship for painitng, attended a summer residency at the British school at Rome and has exhibited across the UK, including Newcastle, Manchester and London. Abigail will be attending the Cyprus School of Art this coming July.

Primarily focused with the processes and materiality of oil paint, Abigail also works in other media such as Print making, Drawing, Photography and Film.

Show Location: Battersea campus: Painting Building, First floor

Interested in the notion of truth, trickery, the real and the fake, Abigail’s work acts like that of the vaudeville stage. Characters, locations and mediums change from scene to scene creating layers of narrative that reflect not only the source of the imagery but also the decision making process of painting itself.

Abigail creates images drawing on her own experiences and memory, as well as art historical and literary sources. She seeks to create her own stories in a new type of narrative painting. With a particular interest in myth and folklore from the North West of England, Abigail’s affiliation to place and home plays a strong role in the construction of her work. In turn, the images tell stories that may be neither true nor accurate, but that reflect a personal yet often archetypal narrative.

Abigail has a deep engagement with the materiality of oil paint and the history of oil painting itself. This interest sees her create complex layers of vibrant colour and pattern, whilst exploring more conceptual ideas within painting including the frame, location and expanded field. Using paint as a physical tool to conceal and reveal past sections of a work, reflecting the layering of narrative while acknowledging the decision-making process of painting itself.

Abigail’s work often has a direct relationship to the environment or circumstance in which it was created. For instance, working in her bedroom over the lockdown saw Abigail move away from oil painting and harsh paint thinners. Cardboard sets and pencil drawings become the result of a hinderance adopted as a new space in which to play.

This most recent body of work made since Abigail left Lancaster for London. Explores the relationship between herself and the green belt agricultural land that surrounds her home. This land is under threat by way of the construction of 700 new homes. The work has become an almost frantic endeavour to record this land its magic and its history. This body of work titled Green Lane is both a cornucopia of information, a desperate attempt at preservation and a brutal recognition of time running out.

Abigail sees such constraints or circumstances as an opportunity to explore new avenues of enquiery both materially and conceptually within her work. 

Break a leg Theres something about an orange glow that just says home. Sat with eyes forward dark back to the park. Waiting for a lift. Lives lived and loves lost, with saddened skin so faithfully trod, yet regrettably returned. Build a house just for yourself now. Paint it and rest, do no more than your best. Make some bread and take it upt'thill yonder now. You know the place. Where the wind is always harder, where you'll scatter your mothers farther. Long out, no, IN! For that painful glow to sease. Now wait.


Oil on canvas with bronze cat


A day trip to Ostia Antica 2


Oil on canvas


It always needed something 27/25cm Oil on Canvas
Its burning on the inside mostly35/40cm Oil on canvas
Our house25/20cm Oil and Acrylic on canvas
One for Myself and for your if were lucky30/32cm Oil on canvas

Abigail Hampsey (b. 1994, Lancaster) and Georg Wilson (b.1998, London) are two halves of an artistic collaboration which began whilst working together on the MA Painting programme at the Royal College of Art (2020-22). Abigail and Georg combine their practices to produce experimental site-specific installations. This ongoing project stages a pantomime of shared narratives, interweaving their divergent experiences and observations of British culture from north to south.

The Basil H. Alkazzi Scholarship Award