Sarah Pym is a contemporary artist and qualified mental health professional based in Thirsk in North Yorkshire. Her upcoming exhibition “Can I See My Feelings” combines two of Sarah’s passions – art and psychology creating a powerful and unique experience. 


Sarah told how it sounds almost ridiculous yet, back in 2014, an insistent little voice in her ear kept repeating: “Paint, paint, paint”. Her vision is to help others grow through change, and she says: “Art is visceral, energetic and thought provoking, it’s meant to be. The more people can learn to understand and manage their emotions the easier they will find it to navigate the life-shocks and challenges of being human.”


The first painting experience, since school, at a workshop in Ludlow gave Sarah the confidence to play, to experiment, and to practice with colour, over and over again. Everyone else in the workshop followed the step by step demonstration implicitly and Sarah intuitively added her own interpretation. For the last seven years she has painted whenever she can and her art resides with collectors all over the UK and internationally. 


Sarah settled in North Yorkshire in 2019. In early January 2020, pre Covid, a child asked her “Can I see my feelings?” This simple sentence unleashed a tsunami of creativity which culminates in this large solo art exhibition at Rural Arts in Thirsk from 6-20 May. 


“Can I See My Feelings” is an exciting body of intuitive abstracts in a variety of media designed to stimulate the viewers towards conversations, colours, and thinking about how they feel when they look at each picture. Sarah has painted many of the emotions: love, anger, fury, grief, joy, brave, excitement, calm, anticipation and shock to name but a few.  She says: “I absolutely love colour and it makes my heart sing, as does helping my clients with their mental health, and for me the two are equally important. I was well on my way with this series when we were locked down in 2020 and over the past two years I have continued to paint and this exhibition is the culmination of that work.”


Through lockdown Sarah used most of the available materials in her studio and the majority of the works are mixed media, with emphasis on mark making, energy and textures. Her next series of work is returning to her first love of nature and the outdoors – abstract landscapes and florals.


“Post Covid there’s so much emphasis on the impact of mental health and a far greater understanding of its importance to each and every life stage. I hope that the visitors to this free exhibition will look and notice how they feel. What does each picture look like to them? Is that picture “Joy” or something else? If it makes people talk about how they feel, and enables others to go home and pick up some colour and let out on to paper exactly what they are feeling and perhaps put a name to what they’re feeling then I’ve succeeded.”


“Being over 60 is liberating as the inner critic is quieter, we’ve learnt how to manage imposter syndrome, and all that we’ve been through in our first sixty years gives us courage and momentum. This is probably the boldest and bravest thing I’ve ever done and there will be literally nowhere to hide in a huge exhibition of over 35 paintings. I’m hugely proud of what I’ve achieved and exhibiting all this framed work together in one room is so incredibly powerful.”


Emotions are fleeting, and frequently change. Sarah said she created this art to last, to cheer, and to surprise. All the original art in this exhibition is available to buy, and canvas prints of various sizes and prices will also be available through Sarah’s website      


Visit this powerful exhibition, be enthralled by the colour and energy of the pieces. “Can I See My Feeling” is at Rural Arts in Thirsk, The Old Courthouse, Westgate YO7 1QS, from 6-20 May 2022. There’s an excellent cafe, and lots of other local art to buy, please note the Gallery shut on Sundays and Mondays. 


‘Attached example pictures are from top 1) ‘Anticipation’ mixed media on canvas 23.5 x 53.8 cm, 2)  ‘Joy’ mixed media on canvas 30 x 60 cm, 3) ‘Doubt’ 35 x 30 cm, 4) ‘Relief’ inks on canvas 34 x 28 cm 5) Shattered’ acrylic on canvas 24 x 24 cm ©️SarahPym  

To contact Sarah Pym please email 

Rural Arts, The Old Courthouse, 4 Westgate, Thirsk, YO7 1QS 01845 526536 and ask for Angela Holt