London Ultra 2018

I’ll be showing my diptych “unnamed portraits” in the London Ultra exhibition at The Bargehouse, London SE1 9PH. The show runs from the 6th to the 9th December, 11.00-18.00. Preview party is on the 6th December, 18.00-21.00.

Who am I? What am I?

Unnamed Portraits 1 and 2

I’ve been working on ideas for a new series of paintings for a while now, and it has got me thinking about why I paint the subjects that I do, and what are the real themes and ideas that I am trying to explore.  Why do I paint naked bodies and not flowers, boats or trees?

What springs to mind when you think “naked”? Exposed?.., self-conscious?.., vulnerable? These are what I feel when I imagine myself naked. Another person might say liberated or sexy. I know from the experience of showing my paintings over the years that people’s perception of nudity varies wildly. A large number of people, for instance,  are simply unable to dissociate  nudity from sexuality.

“Honesty”. If you strip a subject of all its decoration and embellishments, isolate it from its surroundings and props, are you left with the true essence of that subject? Does a painting of a person thus exposed actually say any more about their true character? Is it a more honest depiction than if they were in their chosen attire and makeup?

“Relationships”. In any depiction of a person who posed in front of an artist, there are at work dynamic relationships between the artist, the model and the viewer. Just as the viewer will bring along their own preconceptions of the artist and the subject, so the artist will, during the sitting, form their own opinion of the model’s personality. Subsequently, however they try to honestly describe what they see, the artist’s depiction will always be tainted by their own views. This is what distinguishes a painting from a photo.

“Identity”. Who am I? What am I? These are questions artists and philosophers have been asking through the ages. Although it seems impossible to ever give a truly honest account of the world around us, still they strive to achieve it. I wonder if, when a model poses, if I know nothing about the model, would I be better able to give an honest description of them? Or would the work be somehow diminished if I didn’t know who they were or what they do? I think it’s worth a go. Anyone interested in posing nude for this new series is welcome to get in touch. False names encouraged 🙂

Art of Nude


I’ll be exhibiting “Arrangement on Red Carpet” at the “Art of Nude” exhibition, opening on the 21st September at V.23 – The Old Biscuit Factory, 100 Clements rd, Block F, London SE16 4DG

Open Studio 2018

Well, this years open studio event at Leegate House has been and gone. Many thanks to those that made the journey to this little corner of southeast London. Thankfully the heatwave abated, just for the day, and we didn’t all melt in our studios.

These open studios events are a prerequisite for studio providers to maintain their charitable status – to demonstrate they’re “engaging with the community”. In my experience, many studio providers will only make a token effort, and most artists will see it as an inconvenience.
I’m pleased to say that Bow Arts treated this event with a lot more enthusiasm than some other studio providers I’ve been involved with; as did most of the artists here in Leegate House – it was the most enjoyable open studio that I’ve taken part in. Some of the nicest conversations I had were with local people who’d seen a flyer in the local Sainsburys, and thought “I must go along to that”. I spend most of my time locked away alone in this room on the fifth floor. It’s actually quite nice opening the doors to the public once a year.

Espacio Gallery

Here I am standing in front of a couple of recent paintings on show in the “Perspectives” exhibiton, at Espacio Gallery, London. The show is open until Sunday 13th May.

Exercise in Objectification

I’ve started work on a series of headless nudes. It’s a development of some figure studies I have been working on. I was interested in seeing to what extent a sense of the sitter’s identity could be conveyed if, first, they were stripped of their clothes, and then, as in the case with this painting, their heads were cropped from the painting.

exercise in objectification

Works in Progress

works in progress

I’ve been struggling with a few smaller paintings recently.  A week away from the studio seems to have helped, and I have managed to finish a couple of them in the past two days.

New Model

I had a life drawing session with a new model last weekend. I want to start collecting material for a new series of paintings, where the model is set within a domestic environment, in natural poses; either relaxing, bathing or doing chores. It’s a return to a theme I worked on about ten years ago.
The sitting went well enough. As it turned out, we didn’t move out of the kitchen, as the light was so good in there.

Angel Christmas Fair

I have three recent paintings on show at the Angel Christmas Fair this year.

The Angel Christmas Fair is an annual affordable art and design fair featuring the work of various artists and designers. The event will take place in December 2016 and will comprise all creative disciplines; painting, photography, illustration, fashion, textiles, jewellery, glass, ceramics and furniture.

Islington Art and Design Fair

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I will be exhibiting a couple of painting at the Islington Art and Design Fair, held at Candid Arts Trust in central London. Below is a detail from one of the paintings.

 

The Islington Art and Design Fair is an established showcase for Artists and Designers to promote and sell their work in one of the largest independent contemporary art spaces in central London.

Preview night is on Friday 25th November, 5-9pm, open 26-27th November 11-6pm. Candid Arts Trust, 3 Torrens Street, London EC1V 1NQ