Phil Shepherd was born in London in 1933. He left school at 14 and worked in a scenic studio who produced back-drops for theatres and display stands, following this he worked repairing window dummies before completing his national service in 1951-1953.
He is a self taught artist and had no formal training. He lived in Soho for a while surviving by doing jobs of a dreary and mundane nature and occasional murals in coffee bars and seedy clubs.
He’s exhibited in Norway, London, and other towns in the British Isles, has spent considerable time in Deya – Mallorca where many artists, writers and musicians reside, notably the writer Robert Graves. There he has shown his work in one man and group shows along with Mati Klarwein and Brett Whiteley.
For the past 18 years he has been living in Haworth, West Yorkshire and has exhibited in group shows there and Harrogate.
During his lifetime he’s worked on book covers and a couple of record sleeves, decorated furniture and a gypsy caravan and worked as a sign writer in London and New York. He has also worked on large inflatable stage props for the Rolling Stones 1990 tour “Urban Jungle” and Roger Walter’s concert commemerating the demelition of the Berlin Wall.
This beautifully illustrated book arrived on our doorstep the other morning as if by magic (or it might have been the Royal Mail – who knows). Anyhow, ‘Cuatro cuentos y el cuento más bonito del mundo’ is a wonderful childrens story book, full of the most beautiful and magical illustrations, by a very talented young Spanish artist Maria Cobo.
I perhaps first meet Maria 8 or 9 years ago, when she was an Erasmus exchange student studying in Leeds at the Metropolitan University. Since that time I have had the opportunity to see her work in a range of media including: video (performance), photography and print. And across a range of media her work is always engaging, thoughtful and beautiful. This book is no exception, through her illustrations Maria creates a magical world utilising a range of styles and techniques, with fine details that continually delight the eye from page to page. I’m not able to do the book justice in terms of any kind of review, however, what thought i might do is let one or two of my favourite details from the book do the talking for me. And thank you so much Maria for your wonderful generosity.
I was visiting the South Square Vegetarian Cafe & Gallery the other day, along with Cardigirl who was doing a review, for HowDo magazine, of the cafe and its wonderful food. On display within the Cafe Gallery, at the present time from 20th April – 20th May, is the work of painter Lisa Naylor, the 2011, recipient of the Joan Day Bursary annual award.
‘Prey’ is Lisa’s solo exhibition of medium size paintings and smaller mixed-media/prints. The subject explored in Lisa’s work sometimes appears ‘fairytale like’ but with a very dark and disturbing undercurrent, echoed in titles such as ‘Bondage’ and ‘Forced’. The artist writes that “Currently my work approaches the subject of control, being made to conform to what is expected of us. Objects that appear in my work represent the idea of a subject being made to perform, of being controlled, in a way not natural to them. I am exploring expectations of performance, entrapment and the balances between freedom and domination. My work explores fear, violence, particularly within this so-called social recession, the supposed influx in violent behaviour and deterioration of society and morals. I am interested in exploring social and political ideas and concepts through painting.” Lisa Naylor
Lisa was Born in Bradford, 1983 and is a painter and illustrator and you can learn more of about her and her work here.
August 2005 Frieze cover, image by Francis Stark,
‘As Eloquence Appears‘, is an article about the wonderful Frances Stark. Written by Benjamin Weissman and published in the August 2005 edition of Frieze magazine, As Eloquence Appears is a great introduction, for anyone new to Stark’s beautiful work.
Narrenschiff, 2011, Oil on linen on wooden frame with staples, 26×18″ / 66×45.7cm, by Peter Gallo
Some great new works by Peter Gallo can be seen up on here: http://hortongallery.com/artist/petergallo
A photograph of artist Phill Shepherd in Deia (Circa &1965-69)
I went out for a meal with artists Phil Shepherd and Jean McEwan and had a very enjoyable night. Phil was very entertaining, as always, and shared with us some stories about travelling through France and Spain. Phill has an incredible biography, including living and working as a painter and musician in Deia during the 1960’s & 70’s. This by all accounts was a richly creative period in the history of the little Spanish Island of Majorca:
“Deia’s Golden Age of art, poetry, prose and music lasted from 1960 to 1980. This short but rich epoch was made possible by the lucky confluence of a disparate and international group of writers, musicians and artists on this beautiful and savage coast; the environment that so inspired their creativity. With Robert Graves in the vanguard, writers and artists have congregated in the village of Deia for over sixty years. They were drawn by the mysterious and breathtaking beauty of the locale, the society of the like-minded, the inexpensive food and drink, the spectacular houses and the hospitality of the local people”. Oona Lind
You can read more about Phill and Deia here http://www.cafecody.com/deya/painters.html