Hannah Maybanks

From the Dark Soil

Paintings, Drawings and Cabinets of Curiosity by Hannah Maybank and Edwin Aitken


Exhibition dates

Wednesday 21st September to Thursday 3rd November

Open Monday to Friday 10.00 -17.00


‘From the Dark Soil’ brings together a group of paintings by London based artists Hannah Maybank and Edwin Aitken. A selection of the artists’ collected objects of curiosity, often garnered on journeys, support the wall exhibits in cabinets. 


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To go for a walk on your own in the woods

To lie down in an overgrown garden

Amble in unkempt countryside or over a piece of scrubland listening to the breeze or the branches. 

Listening, through the humus, to the field and forest floor.

The quiet chitter chatter of life creeping, crawling, communicating underneath you.


As dusk comes to dark and dark to dawn, these in-between states re-connect us with the slow emergence or fade of the stars and moons and the consciousness of our pin prick place amongst it all.


To look 

And be looked at.


The title ‘From the Dark Soil’ stems from an extract of Eileen Agar’s autobiography where she likens painting to germinating seeds:



‘ … I am a secret painter, painting for me is a very private occupation…it is something that germinates like a seed; in the dark soil and recesses of the living coral of the mind.. They grow like a plant, slowly putting out shoots, they need pruning, meditating on, while the roots grow in the dark.’



The wonder of it all; we can personify the slow circinate vernation of a fern or the uncoiling of a length of Solomon’s seal or a simple rolled stone. Our souls stretch from the soil to the stars and beyond. 



Paintings that come from a place near the guts, intuition, the place where there are no appropriate words. 

About a walk of the senses

About not only the meeting of human psychology with ‘nature’ and the outer cosmos, but also our physical interconnectedness


Some things are for certain

Some things feel most confused


About life, love, loss

About being a human under the stars

And isn’t that what painting is?



Hannah Maybank – ‘An Intimate Collapsing Constellation’ 50 x 40cm

Getting here