painters TUBES magazine. Read Free issue 8

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Artists interviews, special features. New paintings - in depth articles on artists. work, Gallery reviews and new exhibitions.

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Here is what he had to say to me recently about why the bridge project was important to him...

“...the River Mersey has played a significant role throughout my life; my proximity to it

being a source of inspiration for my work. The decision to buy a property closer to where

I was brought up in Runcorn came at a good time, due to my interest in the continuous

redevelopment of the geographical landscape of Halton. In particular the innovative

construction and development of the Mersey Gateway Bridge. My personal connection

with the Mersey Estuary is much deeper than simply living and working close to the river.

It is a part of my personal history, my father having worked on the Manchester Ship Canal

that runs alongside this particular stretch of the Mersey. What is always in the back of my

mind, is the excellent advice from the influential artist and my mentor, Mike Knowles...

“that an artist should paint what is seen every day.”

The Gateway project is a monumental piece of engineering and I was so excited to record

the development, one of the biggest bridge constructions of its kind in Europe, happening

in my home town and I was overjoyed to be a part of it. I was captivated by the beauty

and elegance of the bridge design, the triangular geometric shape of the tower cable

stays resembling the masts and sails of a ship. The play of light [on them] I found to be an

interesting and major challenge to paint, as they disappeared and reappeared in the ever

changing sky, reflecting in the surface waters of the estuary. The movement in the natural

elements surrounding the man-made structure became another aspect that I wanted to

explore further. Conveying the sheer power of the natural environment against the iconic

structure that was appearing before me, it became almost an obsession...”

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