I graduated from among other establishments the British School in Rome, Beijing’s Central Academy of Art and London’s Byam Shaw School of Art. In recent years I have been exhibiting my work both in China and in London. I have also been exhibited regularly with several central London art galleries as well as being featured annually in national art fairs both in and outside of London since 2002.
As an artist I describe myself as a classically influenced contemporary artist. In my figure sketches I also draw inspiration from ancient Chinese philosophy and painting, deriving more the ideas behind traditional oriental painting than the painting itself.
During my most recent year in Beijing, in 2009/10, I found myself without a model and with only the city around me – and with it the constant supply of exquisite light. This led naturally and fortuitously from a long phase doing mainly drawing to my still life oil series which I am still doing now.
I paint now largely on linen or a pre prepared coloured surface; its voice always leaking through and sometimes contributing to the statement. I was lucky in that my mother in law’s kitchen was always full of such interesting things – old match boxes, bent scissors, aluminium bowls dating back to the 1950s or fascinating items from the Cultural Revolution. Now back in London I am still on the lookout for things that I can respond to, mostly from Portobello market. Ultimately these paintings constitute layers of time, observation of colour mixed and mixed until it is right, chasing the light to tell a consistent story regardless of light and time.
Now back in my London studio I am alternating between oil painting, and figure drawing. Ultimately I believe we have two parts to our brain; the emotional and the spiritual, and the intelligent and the structural. My challenge is to express myself with both these sides simultaneously – to sometimes go beyond the drawing or the painting and make a piece of art with conscious emphasis and de-emphasis, points of impact, points of subtlety, good pictorial design – and above all meaning what I say intelligently and honestly.