Becoming an artist has been a very odd journey for me. I had somewhat of a bumpy start in life. My family was dirt poor during the great depression in England. it was hard times. But we were a very tight family. Four kids. Two girls two boys. My mother a very beautiful and humorous person . My father landed a job on the London Transport. Gold dust in those days. But within a few years , war, the Blitz , evacuations came along and poof, there went our golden days . A brother was added at the end of the war.
I was out of school at fourteen, not a drop out, it was the end of the line. After seven schools I was released into the world of work. The English have a class system, I was at the bottom. It was designed deliberately to have a plentiful supply of low wage workers. I had nothing but menial work. My first job was a theater ticket ad messenger boy. It could have been symbolic. Artists are sort of messenger’s. I would deliver tickets to all the posh clubs in the West End of London. Boodles, Athenaeum, and many others. Old gentlemen seated in old over stuffed armchairs puffing on cigars. The gentry, planning new moves to keep me in my place.
I was conscripted into the RAF. A step up the ladder? Not really. I had o do a test to get into the RAF and I feel I did well, but will never know. Once again menial work and marching. In school I was constantly told I was stupid mainly because I did an awful lot of day dreaming. I was beginning to believe them , But within me I new it was all different. I knew I was destined for something bigger something more exciting. I was right.
I had been stuck in England for twenty two years. I came from ” The Angry Young Man ” generation. One of the Albert Finney’s of the world. I was not going to become a worker bee supporting the Queen and old fogies’ in clubs smoking cigars. I left for the New World . The USA. Great move. Within two years I had an epiphany, I saw art for the first time and how it was made and the environment it was created in. I knew it was my calling , what I had been searching for and the liberation that it meant.. The journey began. I became an artist. I had no money for schools also I had no appetite for them after being abused by them . So I had to go it alone. I hooked up with some artists such as Bob Thompson, Re Grooms, Gandie Brody and Claus Oldenburg. I taught myself art by osmosis. Going it alone, not relying on an education so that I could teach to support myself , I had to rely on what I knew best , how to survive, in the worst of times.
So at 86, how has it all worked out you may ask. It has worked out so very well. With no education in the arts I have had to carve out my own style. I is a mishmashism of sorts. I do not have one particular way of painting say like Rothko, Newman or Pollack. I have no idea where or what is going to happed when I start a canvass. But as shapes and forms appear they release memories stored in the cellars of my mind and surface like good bottles of wine. Here is a work with my Grand Kids enjoying the studio. ” Present and Past” 2016. 64 x 80.
To see more work large and small , go to .” Gallery of painting” at the top.