We are pleased to welcome Gordon Barker to The Wallington Gallery, a very successful artist with his work hanging in collections around the world.
I was born in Gibraltar in 1960. My father was in the army so my family moved around the world until we finally settled in Northamptonshire when I was twelve.
I have always had a vivid imagination and even from a young age I’ve found art fascinating. However, it wasn’t until I came to secondary school that I was given the encouragement from my art teacher to paint and draw in many different ways and to let my own style grow and develop, although in those days my work was very abstract. My art teacher encouraged me to go to Art College in London but I chose to start work instead.
On leaving school I continued to paint in oil, but I was always experimenting with different materials such as glass. I had a few local exhibitions but also ventured to London with my work.
In 1981 I began to paint landscapes for the first time. Initially these were mostly sunsets and silhouettes, but in time I began to paint pictures with more colours and many different subjects. I met my wife in 1982 and I even gave her photographs of my paintings to take home with her until our next date! Of course I made sure I was in one of the photos too!
In late 1983 I sold my first painting to a recording company in Milton Keynes. This gave me the confidence to promote my work to a wider market. This was just the start. Over the next few years I sold about eight hundred originals to companies like MTV Europe, The Gap and also many private collectors, many of these being commissions which have helped to develop my unique style of painting.
I have paintings in corporate and private collections in many countries in the world such as France, Germany, South Korea, USA, Denmark and the United Kingdom.
The landscapes I paint are mostly ones that I’ve created in my imagination. I like to make the pictures ‘busy’ so that each time someone looks at it they notice something else going on. I prefer bright vivid colours that grab people’s attention rather than drab and boring.
I am passionate about my creations and as soon as I finish a painting I am constantly thinking of my next one. I never lose the desire to create another work of art.
The best thing about being an artist is that I start off with a blank white canvas or sheet or paper and gradually, as my imagination takes over, the colours flow until I finish with a colourful, busy story that I hope will grab people’s attention and take their imagination to another level. I want people to enjoy my art and see things in my paintings that also mean something personal to them.
We have 3 cats and I almost always paint a cat in my pictures – sometimes you will have to look hard to find them!
My pictures appeal to both adults and children, each person seeing in the image what they want to see. A child may look at it and see just a train, an adult may look at that same train and remember a ride they took many years ago – it is all a personal journey. Each one as individual as my art form.