It’s nearly time for Paradise, an uplifting celebration of summer vitality, exquisite flora and fauna and luscious painting, curated by the highly acclaimed Rapture collective and focused on new paintings by Jesse Leroy Smith alongside invited artists.

Rapture's ethos is to invite artists that share their vision for the gallery experience, and that have their own distinctive voice, in order to create shows with depth, integrity and exponential passion. Velarde, with its bright gallery space opening onto a beautiful sculpture garden, offers Rapture the ideal environment for the curation of this life affirming, immersive exhibition of colour and light.

Paradise, which includes work by artists Jesse Leroy Smith, Michael Angove, Fleckner, Lucianna Whittle, Jacques Nimki, Richard Ballinger, Anthony Garratt, Mhairi Treharne, Soma Bognar, Sharon Purves, Sethe Smith, Belinda Ireland, Alban Roinard and others, is billed as "a hot house of devotional images of nature and vivid paintings of humankind, adorned with creatures of the sky, surrounded by abundant flowers and lush terrains".

The show is curated around recent work by Jesse Leroy Smith that is profoundly shaped by his many residencies and journeys across Greece. Whilst there, Jesse made a series of expansive paintings in derelict buildings, using the water and natural earth pigments that were to hand.

These images were made in response to the stories and histories he heard on his travels, and his own immediate experiences and feelings.

For Paradise, Jesse has made a 20 by 10ft long frieze painting on canvas tarpaulins, influenced by families dining and socialising in the tavernas and bars of Greece, surrounded by the wild creatures he observed, drew and collaged there.

Ploughed Fields, Granite, Meadow by Richard Ballinger
Ploughed Fields, Granite, Meadow by Richard Ballinger (Richard Ballinger)

Each of the included artists has been inspired by travels to wild landscapes or imaginary places, all working with Rapture to deliver a deeply generous show of positivity and homage to Nature that will include Jesse's expansive tableaux alongside miniature icons, reverential trompe l'oeil images in coloured pencil, and collages disfigured by a heady combination of power tools and emotion.

Paradise is at Velarde on Fore Street in Kingsbridge between May 25 and July 6.