Artist biography I am an artist making and exhibiting moving image, installation, sound and art contraptions. Born in Glasgow, Scotland, and currently living and working in London, I originally trained in classical music. Using video, photography, recordings, drawing and low-tech construction, my work distils abstract and scientific notions into beautiful insights. I have an MA in fine art (Open College of the Arts 2014) and a BA first-class in fine art (Middlesex 2006). Research interests and a fascination in psychology led me to undertake an Msc in the subject (Hertfordshire 2017). I make gallery-based work and often set up projects for myself. I run theViewergallery pop-up for artist projects and moving image screenings, and work as a covert artist in residence. I mentor and tutor, and review and write about books, exhibitions and culture.
Artist statement I've always found shadows and glints of light revealing, as if they are manifestations of the inner person, or psychological messages. Art can see through to the meaning of things. I consider moving image an ideal form to explore ideas about our relative experience of time and the pace and rhythms of thinking. I use layers of photography, video and drawing which at times extend into installation and making art contraptions - low-tech objects with destabilised imagery. I bring my background in classical music into my art practice by abstracting and layering music with recordings to make sound for work, waves of acoustics which reflect the pulse and cycles of consciousness and memory.
I often reread The Object Stares Back by James Elkins to think about its central philosophy that vision is a series of illusions: Seeing alters the thing that is seen and transforms the seer. I am fascinated by the process of creativity itself and how the mind interprets what it sees or invents. My work imagines hidden movements behind solid things, as a reminder to my own thinking that nothing is really static, and even the most solidified thought or belief is subject to change. My approach to making is like a complex abstract painting, which, as soon as marks are made, has layers of equations to resolve. There are many processes and thoughts towards the finished work, and there may be myriad solutions, but there is one right one, one expression and ordering of all the elements which brings art together, creating the form and frame of an idea.
Eleanor's portfolio of projects:
theViewergallery thelongLine, theProgressiveImage, Crucial Pursuit!, Absolute Magnitude
covertartistinresidence Facsimile@V&A, Abridged@RCM
theGlamorousAnorak ARTicles, Reviews
ARThinkingThoughts Research, Art, Creativity, Psychology
VIDA collection eleanormacfarlane Wearable art, scarves, art-inspired clothing
Saatchi Art Eleanor MacFarlane Saatchi Art Eleanor MacFarlane prints
TheWrittenArtist Handwriting, signature, autograph coaching