Sandy Mallet


I make paintings of people’s gardens. You can commission a special work – a portrait of your own or someone else’s garden – that celebrates its qualities, and the ways it can be enjoyed. The works are aerial views, which highlight in abstracted ways best remembered colours, shapes and structures. I have also taken on commissions for paintings of clients’ estates, woodlands and parks. 


The commissioning process can involve discussions, photographs and visits – sometimes ideas are pared down to a selection of a few key points of colour and structure. One client wanted to include the colour of their favourite hen. 


The map paintings first came about after I moved to west Dorset, to a farmhouse near the Iron Age hill fort of Eggardon Hill. The works were initially a response to extensive walks recording field systems and ancient earthworks – and to the many possibilities to do with picture making thrown up by working with maps. 


As you’ll see here, further groups of paintings have included the Coast and River works, made in London during lockdown when remembering places of personal importance, in which I continued my studies of land systems and geology. As well as a group of paintings of great parks, that work alongside the Garden Paintings. 


One of my primary inspirations when starting work in 2004 was the idea of the most rudimentary act that an artist can make – the loading of a brush with colour, and stabbing it onto canvas. The massing of these simple squares of colour became the Square Dancing series, and versions of them have become part of the language of my work in the intervening years, and some sort of reference to the fundamental nature of mark-making. 


I was born in 1961 in Caithness, in the north of Scotland, and have rambled through a career as a curator, gallery director, writer and artist for 25 years. My writing has included works on Modern British and Contemporary artists as well as arts journalism. I live in west London. 


All the works show here are in acrylic on canvas. Most of them are for sale. Do please get in touch if you would like to talk about a commission, or about buying one of the paintings. 



Maps and Stones catalogue – 2009