The first collage artists that engaged me were Raoul Hausmann (“The Art Critic”), Picasso, Schwitters and Peter Blake.
I think the first collage I remember completing was around the age of fourteen or fifteen. During my Fine Art degree my work became quite conceptual, featuring installation and photography but I found that, in subsequent years, I kept returning to collage as a medium. In the mid 80’s, I found that alongside conceptual-based interventions, collage answered many of my concerns as an artist. In my various roles in education, I also found that collage was a great “leveller”, in that it allowed participants to rid themselves of their fears of inadequacy regarding drawing skills and express ideas and explore artistic concepts more freely. For myself, I found that I was able to explore recurring themes of linear and non-linear narrative, the relationship between image and text, political and societal issues, and the inclusion of chance techniques and accidental interventions. In addition, collage as a medium readily made room for fun and play to have their place in the creative process.
I trained as a Fine Artist, completing my degree at Leicester Polytechnic in 1980. After graduation I became a member of the Fosse Artists Group in Leicester. I have worked in a wide variety of educational establishments, teaching art and design to all ages and across a wide range of levels. I have exhibited during this time, chiefly but not exclusively in group shows. I have always enjoyed collaboration with other artists. I have an on-going collaboration with artist/photographer @miketupling in which we email successive stages of a mixed media collage where actions are suggested by the drawing of a “Chance” card from a pack held by both collaborators. In this collaboration, process is more important than outcome. The progress of the collage is posted on Facebook under the guise of a fictitious artist George Kaplan.
Some examples of exhibitions;
1980- Ikon Gallery, Birmingham
1981- “Some Matter in England”, St. Martin’s Gallery, Leicester
1982- Knighton Lane Group, St. Martin’s Gallery, Leicester
1988- “Art Teachers in France”, Town Hall, Dieppe
1998- Elvedon Forest Sculpture Trail, Norfolk
2001- “Confessions”, The Forum, Norwich
2004- Ferini Gallery, Lowestoft
2004- Warehouse Gallery, Lowestoft
2007- “Stinkbomb”, Limbo Arts, Margate
2015- Buckenham Gallery, Southwold
2019- Brampton Willows Open Day, Brampton, Suffolk