“It looks like the beginning of the world, somehow: the sea looks older than in other places, the hills and rocks strange, and formed differently from other rocks and hills…The hill-tops are shattered into a thousand cragged fantastical shapes. The savage rock-sides are painted of a hundred colours. Does the sun ever shine here? When the world was moulded and fashioned out of formless chaos, this must have been the bit over—a remnant of chaos!”

William Thackeray
The Irish Sketchbook of 1842

The Irish coastline is full of paradox. The tranquil calmness of the glistening, turquoise ocean, such as Malin Beg or Portsalon, begging you to sink into the cool blue ocean, contrasted with the frenetic, almost violent pounding of waves at Malin Head or Ballintoy. At the same time calming but energetic, tranquil yet noisy. It truly is ‘Untamed’. There is nothing we can do to contain its power. It is savage, powerful, awesome, ferocious and free in its’ wild and natural state.

Each piece takes a few weeks from conception to finish. I work intuitively and in layers, which means that I need a lot of drying time between. This gives me time to really study the painting in depth and learn what it needs from me and where I need to take it.

I hope you love the new series. My hope is that you experience raw and authentic art, art that connects with your brave, vulnerable soul. Art that energises you and enables you to become as powerful and bold as the landscapes I seek to represent.

‘Meant to Be’ 91.5 x 61 cm, Acrylic on canvas


‘May today be the day you come into the light and shine how you were always meant to’ – Morgan Harper Nichols

A real statement piece and one I must admit, is rather hard to part with. I really do hope it goes to a good home! I don’t often paint in purple, but I was really drawn to this colour palette as I wanted to create a moody, ethereal and emotional landscape. And of course I couldn’t help popping a little neon yellow in there! It is based on the rocky coastline of County Down, with the rugged Mourne mountains sprawling into the Irish sea. I hope the title of this painting creates contemplation and that it encourages you to remember that right now, you are exactly where you are meant to be.

Available to purchase here at Yard Gallery

‘Ballintoy Dusk’ 60 x 41.5 cm, Acrylic on canvas


‘Come away O human child! To the waters and the wild.’ – WB Yeats

Inspired by a vibrant sunset I saw on a recent trip to Antrim. It was November, and the sun was setting at the the gorgeous harbour of Ballintoy. I’d stumbled across Ballintoy earlier in the year (read about it here), and was awestruck by the colossal waves and sheer stark beauty of the rocks. Ballintoy is a well known filming location for the TV series Game of Thrones, so it has become quite popular in recent times. But at that moment, with the sun setting, I had the whole place to myself. The pink and orange clouds illuminating the sky were the perfect backdrop to the rugged landscape and wild, untamed waves. A perfect moment.

Available to purchase here at Yard Gallery

‘Light Will Guide You Home’ 50 x 50 cm, Acrylic on canvas


‘Lights will guide you home

And ignite your bones

And I will try to fix you’

– Coldplay

Based on the stunning coastline of County Down with the glorious Mourne Mountains in the distance. Heavily textured, I have taken inspiration not just from the rocky coastline and the deep hue of the ocean, but from the radiant, kaleidoscopic sunset that paints the sky and is reflected on the waves. From deep blues, to copper, to ochre, this is a real statement piece that captures the wildness and untamed personality of the coastline.

Available to purchase here at Yard Gallery

‘Look For The Light’ 50 x 50 cm, Acrylic on canvas


‘Look For The Light’ is a bold, vibrant acrylic work on canvas that I hope embodies the energy and chaos of waves crashing against a backdrop of the stormy skies. A heavily textured painting, the wild dark blue waves, the turquoise sea spray and the neon pink pop; a quivering melting pot of colour. The title shows that even in the darkness there is light – we just need to look for it. Even in the storm there is beauty.

Available to purchase at Framewerk Gallery, Belfast. Please contact me here to purchase.

With rolling green hills overlooking moody dark rocks, interspersed with golden sands and turquoise blue coves, not to mention vibrant pink and orange sunsets, the coast plays to my love of brave textures and bold colours. Like most of my paintings, the mood is abstract expressionist, I don’t like my paintings to be perfect representations of what I see. Rather, I want to set the tone of the landscape, the bold texture and colour to lead you to your own conclusion and to encourage deep and personal contemplation. The wildness and the energy and chaos of the rocky coastline is a constant source of inspiration. I hope this body of work manages to represent that energy and chaos.

Please get in touch if you have any questions at all.

The images, artwork, and contents of this website may not be copied, collected, or used for personal or professional gain without the written permission from Helena Tarn. All images of artwork, sold or otherwise, are retained by Helena Tarn.

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