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Schwetzinger Zeitung, Schwetzingen Germany

Friday
21 MAY 2010

Scholarship: Keith Salmon from Scotland to paint until the end of August at the invitation of
the Künstlerbund artists’ association and City Council

No Work is Created Purely from the Imagination


By our staff writer
Nikolaus Meyer

SPEYER – The 23rd scholarship recipient to live and work at the Künstlerhaus artist’s studio
in Sämergasse in Speyer goes by the name of Keith Salmon, from Irvine/ Scotland. The
artist, who suffers from diabetic retinopathy, has lost his sight almost entirely. Twenty years
after the first diagnosis, the 50-year-old now only has five percent of his visual capacity
remaining and the doctors reckon he will become completely blind in the near future.

As the guest artist assured our reporter in an interview, however, he is in no way discouraged
by this. Indeed it was specifically because of this affliction that Salmon, who studied art in
Cornwall/ England and started off as a sculptor, turned to painting in the first place. He wants
to work with colours for as long as possible and he has successively adapted his painting
style to keep pace with his progressive disability.

Although his vision is severely impaired, direct contact with his motifs is essential, because
nothing is produced purely from his imagination. In this way, his paintings provide
impressions and inspirations of objects and landscapes which he has seen in his own unique
way.

When working on flat surfaces with oil and acrylic paints and pastel crayons, he only uses
wide brushes, because he can no longer draw fine lines. Structures are created purely
through his unique scribbling technique. Salmon is regarded as an aesthete whose emotions
and memories flow into his works.

Once he has lost his sight completely, he intends to return to sculpturing, where his
pronounced sense of touch can be of great value to him. Salmon, who was officially
welcomed to Speyer last Wednesday by Mayor Monika Kabs, Künstlerbund president Holger
Grimm and other representatives of the artists’ association which was founded in 1984, will
be living and working in the city’s Künstlerhaus studio until early September.

He is receiving plenty of support to begin with from his partner, Anita Groves, who is helping
him to find suitable motifs in the cathedral city. The Künstlerbund will be exhibiting the
paintings produced by Salmon during his stay in Speyer at a public exhibition to be held on
the last weekend in August.

Caption to photograph:
Has a special relationship with colour due to a visual impairment: Keith Salmon (right) with
mayor Monika Kabs and Holger Grimm. PHOTO: VENUS

www.keithsalmon.org and
www.kuenstlerbund-speyer.de

**Note from artist: Keith would like to add that at present his limited vision is stable and as
such he remains focused on his paintings at this time.