John Wilson

Aqueduct by John Wilson
Night Shift by John Wilson
The Picasso Gallery by John Wilson
Lighting Up Time by John Wilson
End Of The Day by John Wilson
The Beach by John Wilson
Steam Up by John Wilson
All Around The Clock Tower by John Wilson
River Scene by John Wilson
A Winter Scene by John Wilson
In The Spotlight by John Wilson
Me And My Shadow by John Wilson
A Working Day by John Wilson
The Football Match by John Wilson
The animators and fiendish minds responsible for bringing the popularly-cultured likes of South Park and Channel 4ís Modern Toss to our screens in recent years might offset distinctly adult themes to their naively, childishly scrawled creations, yet contemporary artist, John Wilsonís equally as frivolous and infantile studies and perspective remain firmly footed in the realms of a more user-friendly, less censored fantasy. Whilst Wilson shares the common ground of juxtapositioning child-like scribbles of leading characters against almost real-time, occasionally 3-D backdrops like the aforementioned enfant(s) terrible of modern comedic animation, thatís precisely where any similarities end. Instead Wilsonís observations are pure and honest reflections of just how your average 5 year old child would paint themselves within the constraints of a non-moving frame. Although a frame thatís never not animated by the sheer fun and absurdity of the observations and interactions residing within it.

The idea behind Wilsonís take on childhood perceptions stem from when his own Ė then four-year-old daughter, Stephanie Ė presented him with a wax crayoned self portrait that sheís created at play school one day. Being the typical study, featuring a front-facing child bereft of any depth or alternative elevations lovingly accepted the piece for what it was. It wasnít until Wilson noticed a recurrent pattern with other youngsterís first tentative forays into art, that it made him think about the potential ways in which a childís view of art could be teamed with an adultís perception, and indeed more considered perspective. Pretty much all paintings capture people face-on, whilst conversely; pets and animals very rarely appear anything other than in profile in contrast.

Researching the matter, Wilson discovered that Picasso once famously declared that as a child he not only viewed his subject matter from an adult orientation, he drew and painted with this very same mindset and eye, whilst ironically as an adult Ė and when attempting to reverse this process Ė was an aspect he could never master. Perception is very much key in art as we know, again something touched on when Wilson regales us with an episode when attending a David Hockney exhibition many years ago. On entering the exhibition, Wilson could have sworn he witnessed what on first glance was undoubtedly a painting depicting a flight of stairs leading up to a marble arch, set amid a backdrop of the sun. Yet by complete contrast, and on closer inspection, the composition was of a wooden table positioned on a veranda overlooking the sea.

So Wilson blended a childís interpretation of how they see themselves (and those objects around them) with a prescribed, conservative application that denotes an unreserved adultís understanding and manifestation of what theyíre confronted with. Wickedly humourous captures of triangular and caterpillar-bodied kids, complete with crazily-angled pipe cleaner limbs and straggly hair, all vivaciously coloured, yet set amid a very real, but measured background. Painting and art are all prevailing within these background vistas, be they in a domestic setting or in an art gallery, ensuring that the witty observations arenít removed totally from context and continually reminding us as to how art is perceived by adults and children, and moreover how itís conveyed.

Itís all a far cry from Wilsonís formative years, when as a 10 year old he staked his future claim to an artistic career by landing first prize in a school Easter card design competition, the result of which galvanised the aspiring artist to carry on drawing. In Wilsonís case, aeroplanes and cars served as his muses, being his primary interest in life at that tender age. However it was a couple of years later, and the Christmas of his 12th year that cemented Wilsonís passion for art and inspired him to make it his future career. Notably a set of oil paints and an easel (the latter of which he still owns and uses today, some 40 years on). Itís the sweeping palette of colours and the textures and effects created by the paints themselves that gave Wilson the confidence and will to explore his chosen medium, and which ultimately gave rise to him choosing to enrol on Saturday morning art classes at the Harrogate School of Art. Two years on, and Wilson opted to study on a part-time evening class, where he was introduced to the worlds of figurative painting and Pop Art; two elements of art that heíd later draw upon to such visually arresting effect.

After taking a self-imposed hiatus from art Ė although keeping up his hobby in his spare time Ė as he decided to successfully set-up and run his own small business, get married, become a slave to a mortgage, raise a family, etc, it was only in the mid-1990s that Wilson was in the right place to launch, and dedicate his time, to a career as a professional artist.

View All Art Works By John Wilson