Born in Stockport, David Wightman’s first exposure to art was through the Manchester Art Gallery where he became captivated by the pre-Raphaelite collection and the fantasy worlds of William Holman-Hunt and John William Waterhouse. Wightman has come a long way since those early days. In 2010, Wightman was awarded a fellowship in Berwick-upon-Tweed by Berwick Gymnasium Fellowship, English Heritage and has exhibited at Sumarria Lunn, Cornerhouse, William Angel Gallery and Found Gallery.
Wightman’s latest exhibition at Halcyon Gallery is the first solo exhibition of works by the artist and shows over 15 new works completed between 2011 and 2012. Bridging the genres of landscape and abstraction, Wightman’s work holds a graphic preciseness that has earned him extensive recognition.
Inspired by Caspar David Friedrich and Ad Reinhardt, Wightman creates his landscape and abstract paintings using a systematic process that relies on craft and discipline. Every work is made from individual pieces of wallpaper, painstakingly cut with a surgical scalpel and placed side by side, never overlapping. After stretching a canvas, he applies the wallpaper, then sands and primes the work, ready for painting.
The exhibition catalogue includes an introduction from Cherie Federico, Editor of Aesthetica. We’ve included a short excerpt below:
“You must spend time with Wightman’s paintings; on the surface they are beautiful and intricate, but like the layers they are made from, there is so much depth to these works – they contemplate not only artifice, but also the natural versus the manmade. His combination of craft and skill redefines genres and blurs meaning. As an emerging artist, this show at Halcyon is his first major foray into the international art world, but it’s only a matter of time until David Wightman justifiably gains wider recognition.”
David Wightman: Paramour, 19/04/2012 – 20/05/2012, Halcyon Gallery, 24 Bruton Street, London, W1J 6QQ. www.halcyongallery.com
All images copyright the artist. Courtesy of Halcyon Gallery, London.
Posted on 16 April 2012