Oil on linen

East Ante Room

Courtesy IBID Projects, London and Hauser & Wirth, New York. Private Collection of Magnus Edenvard

This small oil painting offers a contemporary counterpoint to the many historic landscapes and pastoral scenes in Attingham's collection. Anj Smith's beautifully textured and dream-like paintings often allude to the symbolic power of animals. The female figure standing in the barren landscape is a construction of animal skulls, as if wearing a ritual or funereal dress.

Both gorgeous and nightmarish, the painting speaks of grief and impermanence, taking on the theme of widowhood and absence prevalent in the East Anteroom.

Anj Smith

Anj Smith's paintings are filled with landscapes seemingly from an apocalypse, haunted by surrealistic and mysterious figures fashioned from the fabrics of decay. She investigates ideas of the contemporary sublime: a realisation of the hugeness beyond human consciousness that inspires awe, and sometimes terror, in the human psyche. The subtle touches of dry humour within Smith's imagery reveals an element of wry wit in the smallest of details.

Anj Smith has a BA in Fine Art (Painting) from the Slade School of Fine Art and an MA from Goldsmiths College, London. Recent exhibitions include IBID Projects in London in 2011 and Geometry of Bliss at Hauser and Wirth in New York in 2010. Her work has been exhibited internationally at numerous prestigious galleries.