VIEW IN MY ROOM
"Icarus" is a page from my book "A Natural History". It is always a challenge to interpret classical mythology in a new way and artists, in both the visual arts and literature have attempted it over the centuries. Here's my shot at it!
Painting:Oil on Paper
Size:8.3 W x 11.4 H x 0.1 D in
Ready to Hang:No
British artist.Has exhibited in solo and group shows, in museums and galleries nationally and internationally. Now living in Romanshorn, Switzerland. Initially, because both my parents painted, I wanted to do something else! I decided to write and at 17 won second prize in the Stroud Festival of Literature poetry competition. This led me to study English and American Literature at Bristol University. But the visual arts were in my blood and in my early 20's I started making sculptural objects, mostly at that time using 3-4mm thick saddlery and harness leather which I used to get from Conolly's warehouse in London. I would mould,form,stitch and colour it. I spent 1983/84 at Corwainers College in London experimenting and developing techniques. While there I spent many free hours drawing and being inspired by the objects in The Museum of Mankind (now sadly gone) and have since continued my love of "tribal art" and indiginous "World Art".Soon, these turned into paintings, where in many of them the dominant themes turned out to be an attempt to express tensions and relationships between nature and technology and between our material and spiritual dimensions. I developed a method of using bookbinders board, which I could cut to the required dimensions, building the painting out of pieces so that I could alter the size and format of the painting as I worked. It was a way of stirring things up in the work as I could move parts of the painting around, adding and discarding images, and finding interesting chance encounters. When the work felt right,then the pieces were glued to thin ply, finished and braced. Many of the paintings ended up with the piece of board I'd used as a palette inlayed into the painting. In 1987/88 I was awarded a major bursary by South West Arts, and in 1989 was invited to give a solo show at Fremantle Arts Centre as part of the Perth International Festival of the Arts in Western Australia. From this I was offered teaching and residencies, first in Western Australia, and then in the east in Canberra where I was artist-in-residence at Canberra School of Art where I also had a solo show. Altogether my wife Romy and I spent a couple of years in the country before travelling on to New Zealand where we spent nearly three years. While there I had a couple of solo shows in galleries in Auckland, and a residency at Waikato Polytechnic in Hamilton.
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