My work occupies a space between concrete poetry, abstract painting and landscape painting. My most recent work has involved taking single words, small groups of words, or short phrases and painting them, usually in white on neutral or coloured grounds, using fairly 'straight' typefaces. I feel that they draw more on the aesthetic of informational or warning signs (for example the names of lightship stations, which are painted in huge letters on the hulls of the vessels), and on an involvement with words themselves, than on a pop-art sensibility, or the work of Ed Ruscha. The idea of using words came from walking the Cleveland Way, in Yorkshire, when I wrote impressions and things that I saw, usually as single words, on index cards. I found that these cards often captured the experiences of the walk better than the sketches or photos that I made. What excited me was not the recording of the walk, or the walk as artwork as in the work of Long or Fulton, but the power of the words themselves. Separated from syntactical relations with other words (or larger units of text), words become tactile objects, with their own feel and sound. Even as disaggregated units, they obviously still have the power to refer and this opens the up to a range of expressive and metaphorical readings. Multiple meanings of words and puns also come into play; I think of the words I use as Found Objects. Words presented in this way also take on the muteness that painting is supposed to possess over against text. However, text and image are mutually invasive.
CV & Education
Born 1977 in York, UK.
2016 group show This year's model, Studio 1.1, London
2015 group show Black Cube Collective Annual Show, Edinburgh
2015 group show Monsters, Maps and Myths, Rose Cottage of Curiosities, Sheerness
2015 group show This year's model, Studio 1.1, London
2015 group show PH1: artists in place, New Schoolhouse Gallery, York
2014 “satellite artist” to Stevie Ronnie in PH1 residency, New Schoolhouse Gallery, York
2014 group show Black Cube Collective Annual Show, Edinburgh
2014 group show This year's model, Studio 1.1, London
2013 group show Voyage: sea journeys, island hopping and trans-oceanic concepts, Künstlerhaus Dortmund
2013 group show This year's model, Studio 1.1, London
2013 group show Library of Lost Books, Birmingham and travelling
2012 group show Not Only, Factory-Art, Berlin.
2012, residency at Bank Street Arts, Sheffield, UK
2011 group show, Library Thoughts, Hungarian Multicultural Centre, Budapest
2008 solo show in St Michael-le-Belfrey Church, York, UK
2005 solo show at Westbourne Grove Artspace, Notting Hill, London.
1999-2001 MA Communication Art & Design, Royal College of Art
1996-1999 BA (Hons.) Design: Visual Communication, Glasgow School of Art (first class)
1995-1996 BTEC Diploma Foundation Studies in Art & Design, York College of Further & Higher Education.
During my period of study I won the following prizes:
2001 Sheila Robinson Memorial Prize for Drawing.
2001 Mann Group Portfolio Prize (runner-up).
1999 John and Anna Laurie Bequest Scholarship.