Colin Taylor

South-from-Portland-Tower

Colin Taylor

Biography

As well as being a painter, Colin Taylor has nearly 30 years experience of climbing and working in mountains in Europe, South America and Asia. He was born in the East Midlands and studied art and drama at Trent Polytechnic, Nottingham in the mid-eighties. He then moved to Manchester, and set up a company in the outdoor leisure industry which still operates today and which still influences his artwork and more specifically, the context for ‘A short walk in the big landscape’; a series of nine solo exhibitions that toured England in 2008/09.

In 2011, he exhibited nearly 40 drawings at the Liverpool Anglican Cathedral, the first time a single artist had been invited to focus on the building’s architecture as subject. He has also had solo exhibitions in New York, Cologne, Washington DC. and in 2015 his work was exhibited in Paris.

This page of Colin Taylor’s work concentrates on his paintings of Manchester which he has created in the same way as any of his landscape paintings. i.e. they are about experiencing the environment in which he finds himself. Please go to our current online exhibition to see the artist’s collection of small mixed media drawings of Manchester. If you would like to see Taylor’s paintings of mountain ranges that he has climbed and painted please enquire at wendy@wendyjlevy-art.com

Colin Taylor’s paintings are greatly influenced by his climbing, and vice versa. His work is best described in his own words:

Artist’s Statement:
“I am motivated by the idea of a visual language that communicates more than what I see or what I can explain. In truth, it is probably more about what I can’t explain, but know to be there.

Whilst I have only just started to unwrap what that proposition means in terms of my own arts practice, (and in all probability I doubt that I will ever get to its core), my belief in its importance is now well established.

For some time I had been sure that there was some kind of reciprocal relationship between the experience of being within a huge natural landscape and my own art practice. It took some time though, before this connection became obvious enough for me to understand that climbing mountains was less of a physical activity and much more of a psychological challenge. That realisation meant that I had to find a way of embedding something of the effort and emotion experienced into my work and not just reproduce the visual panorama in a factual and leaden way.

This intangibility is of course impossible to nail down since it defies known logic, verbal explanation, and is ever-changing – but it seems to me, just about plausible that you can paint or draw ‘about’ the landscape experience, and not just the landscape itself.

There is a sense of uncertainty about the proposition and I readily admit that I don’t really hold out much hope in unearthing some kind of confirmation – but then it is only with uncertainty that real creativity exists at all and what emerges from such uncertainty are ‘outcomes’, not solutions. Each painting, drawing, sketch or scribble is an imperfect outcome but which hopefully adds a little to the experience beyond leaden fact.

In another context, someone once described painting as a ‘site of struggle, doubt and pleasure’ and this is just about as good a definition of the act of painting as I have found, (interestingly, it applies equally well to climbing mountains), each painting or drawing is either a continuation or reaction against previous image and only a bridge between that and the next and it is within each, that the ‘struggle’ has to be played out.”

EXHIBITIONS :

2015
October: Paris, France, (Joint exhibition)
June: Contemporary Six Gallery, Manchester (Solo exhibition)

2014
Susan Calloway Fine Art, Washington, DC, USA (Solo exhibition)
Exhibition in Calgary, Canada (Solo exhibition)

2013
Denbigh Arts Centre, North Wales (Solo exhibition)
Denise Yapp Fine Art, Monmouth (Solo exhibition)
Wendy J Levy Gallery, Manchester (Solo exhibition)
Susan Calloway Fine Art, Washington DC, USA (Solo exhibition)

2012
Cologne City Hall, Germany (Solo exhibition)
Brenda Taylor Gallery, New York, USA (Solo exhibition)

2011
Liverpool Anglican Cathedral (Solo exhibition)
Highgate Institute, London (Solo exhibition)
Wendy J Levy Gallery, Manchester (Solo exhibition)

2010
Art Miami,
Brenda Taylor Gallery, New York.
San Diego Art Fair
Wendy J Levy Gallery, Manchester

2009
Doncaster Museum and Art Gallery (Solo exhibition)
Wendy J Levy Gallery, Manchester (Solo exhibition)

2008
Denbigh Library and Art Gallery (Solo exhibition)
Brindley Arts Centre, Runcorn
Galanthus Gallery, Hereford
Cooper Gallery, Canterbury University (Solo exhibition)

2007
‘Changing 8’ Liverpool Hope University
Wendy J Levy Gallery, Manchester
Rhyll Arts Centre, Denbighshire

Previous Selected exhibitions:
Derby City Art Gallery
Ikon Gallery, Birmingham. Touring Exhibition
Oriel Gallery, Clwyd
Galleri Lang, Malmo, Sweden.
Mansfield Art Gallery
Stockport Art Gallery & Museum
BDP Preston.
Gallerie Impact, Albi, Toulouse, France

Throughout 2007/8 he worked on a re-interpretation of Thomas West’s original viewing ‘stations’ adapted from ‘A guide to the Lakes of Cumberland, Westmorland and Lancashire’ published in 1778.

Colin Taylor and his paintings of the Lake District were featured on BBC One’s ‘Countryfile’.

Artworks

Colin Taylor

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