Raen Barnsley lives and works in London. 

2019 - MA in Fine Art at City and Guilds London School of Art

2017 - First in BA (Hons) Fine Art at The University of Gloucestershire  


Raen Barnsley is a multidisciplinary artist whose practice explores the functions of her own mind. Producing visual representations of how her dyslexia behaves when inundated with stimuli and information, Barnsley creates physical manifestations of her experiences when processing written and verbal language. By using the structure of the grid, she depicts a fluctuating cognitive understanding of something new by using an alphabet of shapes that move in and out of the grid’s clasp. These shapes hint at broken and suspended connections, existing as lively, floating silhouettes that create illusionary depth. The different colours, textures, and shapes in her work help to differentiate between the multiple streams of incoming information.


Barnsley is heavily influenced by the possibilities of contemporary imaging software, hard-edged abstraction, and cartography’s subjective depictions of space. Spanning print, painting, collage, and sculpture, her works appear to be digital in origin, but this perception is altered when viewed at close range. The layers of flat, matte paint become lusciously visible, and what lies beneath still manages to have a presence in the foreground. Her works are produced in a similar method to the production of digital images; using multiple layers, areas of indicated transparency, and highly saturated, screen-type colours. Concerned with how technological advances in software will continue to change the aesthetic of her work, Barnsley is interested in what it means to bring the virtual into the non-virtual, with hand-produced work made with traditional techniques.


Upcoming – Open Exhibition, Ovalo Gallery, Mexico City, 2019

Red Herring, The Island, Bristol, 2018

Bloomberg New Contemporaries, Block 336, London, 2018 

Bloomberg New Contemporaries, Baltic Mill & Baltic 39, Newcastle, 2017

Now Us, R. K. Burt Gallery, London, 2017

UOG 2017, Hardwick Gallery, Cheltenham, 2017

Sind wir der zeitgeist, Hardwick Gallery, Cheltenham, 2017

Arts Festival 2016, All Saints Church, 2016

Resolute, Hardwick Gallery, Cheltenham, 2016


Leverhulme Scholarship for Postgraduate Study, 2018

Bloomberg New Contemporaries, 2017

Travel Award - Research in Switzerland, 2015