Art, Emerging Artist

Aly Helyer: The Stunning Expressionism Of A Great Brush

Aly Helyer, the London-based painter, has emerged as a distinctive force in the contemporary art scene, captivating audiences with her expressive brilliance. Helyer’s artistic journey began with a traditional education in painting at Chelsea School of Art in the 90s. This formative period laid the groundwork for her exploration of techniques favored by art history, setting the stage for a career that would redefine portraiture and challenge artistic conventions.

Career Path:

Helyer’s artistic education paved the way for a career that seamlessly blends tradition with innovation. With a keen focus on techniques and skills reminiscent of historical masters like Giotto, Fra Angelico, and Rembrandt, Helyer’s studies at Chelsea School of Art instilled in her a profound appreciation for the foundations of art. Over the years, she has collaborated with prestigious galleries, including Almine Rech and Sim Smith, showcasing her works on a global stage. Helyer’s artistic journey has been marked by a commitment to exploring and interpreting traditional painting on her own terms, culminating in her recent series, “The Forerunners.”

Art and Style:

Aly Helyer’s artistic style is a mesmerizing blend of the traditional and the avant-garde. In her own words, she aspires to be a “Romantic Expressive,” aiming to infuse the stillness and control of early Renaissance art with the expressive vibrancy of her unique vision. The series “The Forerunners,” exhibited at Draw Art Fair, exemplifies this fusion. Departing from conventional portraiture, Helyer employs bold strokes, exaggerated proportions, and a vivid color palette, redefining the boundaries of traditional compositional techniques.

The Forerunners, a collection of 48 portraits on paper, is a testament to Helyer’s ability to engage with and depart from conventional norms. Inspired by Fra Angelico’s San Domenico Altarpiece, Helyer isolates each figure, exploring themes of isolation, trapped emotions, and disconnection. The use of gouache and tempera on paper adds a distinctive touch to her creations, creating a cohesive yet compositionally solitary group of portraits.

Artistic Philosophy:

Helyer’s art is not merely a visual spectacle but a psychological exploration. In her tightly cropped worlds inhabited by androgynous figures, she navigates the complexities of human identity. Drawing inspiration from personal experiences, art history, and magazines, her paintings transcend the real world, existing as a reflection of the mysteries of her own journey. Helyer’s organic process of creation allows for a psychological narrative to unfold, with themes of tenderness, fragility, love, and loss emerging organically.

Legacy and Recognition:

Aly Helyer’s vibrant and intricate portraits have not gone unnoticed. Exhibiting extensively in London, Brussels, and Los Angeles, her work has garnered attention for its fusion of figurative and surreal elements. Utilizing a rich palette, she constructs intense, emotion-driven narratives that resonate with personal experiences and societal observations, solidifying her place as a significant contributor to the contemporary art landscape.

In conclusion, Aly Helyer’s artistic journey is a testament to her ability to transcend artistic boundaries, blending tradition with innovation to create a visual language that speaks to the complexities of the human experience. As she continues to redefine portraiture, Helyer invites audiences into her world of expressive brilliance, where every stroke tells a story and every canvas is a testament to the evolving nature of art.