I was encouraged to draw and paint, from a very young age, by my father, A.E. Newton, who was a cartoonist for Gordon Fraser and superb draftsman. I gained my degree in Art History with Fine Art at Cambridgeshire College of Arts in 1985, and began to exhibit my paintings in 1997. I was awarded first prize in the Tabernacl Art Prize from the Museum of Modern Art Wales, as well as The Green City Art Prize in Birmingham, after which the painting was obtained by the city, for the Mayor’s parlour. In 2002, Birmingham Women’s Hospital commissioned 5 works, and more recently my image ‘The Housemaid’ was published as a book cover for Hector Tizon’s ‘La Mujer de Strasser’.
In 2001, I was elected Member of the Royal Birmingham Society of Artists, and exhibited with the NEAC in London for a few years. I have exhibited widely in mixed and solo shows with galleries around the UK and my original work is represented by Red Rag Gallery, Stow-on-the-Wold, The Minster Gallery, Winchester and Norton Way Gallery, Letchworth. I now live in the beautiful and rugged countryside of Finistère in France, and love being part of wider Europe and its culture.
My narrative work explores the idea that our lives are set against a backdrop of landscape and culture which becomes part of who we are. However our personal and spiritual story is told through our facial expression, which is always a very important part of my painting. Through it, I try to capture something of the dignity, vulnerability and humour of being human. I often discover as much as I plan when I paint, uncovering a subtle narrative behind the figure and setting. Hopefully my work invites the viewer to contemplate the story and emotion of the piece, which not only changes from viewer to viewer, but can also develop over time.