Frank Briffa

Since 2005 all my paintings have had strong associations with music. There are already links between music and the visual arts such as a shared vocabulary, for example, composition, tonality, colour, chromaticism, texture.


Some music has the ability of transporting us to another place and my paintings are based on pieces of music which, for me, have this quality.


In making these paintings I am not primarily trying to illustrate anything – I am more concerned with trying to find a pictorial equivalent to the musical language, although in some paintings figurative elements do creep in.


The pieces of music I use I have known over a long period  so that they have had time to produce a response. The paintings that result may be based on an entire piece or to just a few bars from a large work.


The composers I have used include Nielsen, Varèse, Mahler, Martinů, Tippett, Berg, Stravinsky, JS Bach, Dowland, Bartók and Charles Ives, a composer who has had a particular influence on my work.


Frank Briffa, June 2016

Watch an interview with Frank here

Featured Artist