nick dodd-06.png

Saturday 5 March - 12 April 2022

I began drawing at an early age: imaginary characters, birds, animals, game-inspired personalities.  In school, although i studied art, playing music and gaming dominated my creative output.  Following school, I studied French and History at Lancaster University.  Part of the course was based in France and it was at this time that I became more ‘awake’ to the experiences which were to inform my renewed artistic interest. I was especially keen to explore the relationships between art, music and philosophy – Astral Weeks by Van Morrison and Andre Masson’s surreal creations were powerful influences.  This became my ‘nonsense-ness’ period – I would take up a pencil and fill sketchpads with automatic work, hallucinogenic in style.

 

Subsequently I completed a dissertation on French Art History – a study which looked at the work of Matisse, Gauguin and Jean Leon Gerome, exploring how western artists viewed and used oriental images – the orient including both Africa and the Pacific in its metaphorical geography.  Some artists exploited the exotic, others increasingly inhabited it, employing flat surfaces and meaningful colour – to the extent that there was eventually no division between the creator and the work.

 

At the beginning of lockdown I was working in the Care Industry, and it was at the end of 2020 that I decided to dedicate my time to art and to see where it might lead me.  At first I worked on small pen drawings, occasionally adding colour, before extending my scope with larger compositions.  Influences now included Pavel Filonov, A.R. Penck, Sigmar Polka and Arik Brauer.  I was especially excited by the concept of Maximalism – which allowed me to display the richness and complexity of my imagination.  It is a heady brew.  I see the artist as a conduit for creativity – and therefore, naturally, there is an attendant element of spirituality.

 

My images simply come to mind – I build structures, frequencies – often there is a nautical element (on account of my maritime proximity).  Raw energy is the starting point – the fusion at the centre of a star – then the pictures ‘take over’, giving me signals – I become the picture’s servant.  Occasionally there is a slight resistance in the process which brings about happy accidents.  My medium is a combination of gouache, watercolour and fine liner pens upon mixed media art paper.

 

The world has gone mad on materialism – left-brained – and art, unobsessed for the most part with achieving the ‘goal’, remains underappreciated.  Nonetheless, in the future, I would like to upscale my current work and find a career in art – this is the beginning – my first exhibition.

 

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