artists register

steve newton


scratch just below the surface...

scratch just below the surface...

boxed sculpture (behind perspex sheet) includes wood carving, glass eyes, teeth, nails, wallpapers.

Original
mixed media, wood,
72cm x 32cm x 22.5cm

Introduction

My work is a reflection of my thoughts, feelings and experiences. Or indeed my interpretation of others experiences. I am disturbed by much that I see and hear around me and my art is an effort to better understand these experiences and the resulting confusions.

The dominant themes in my work are alienation and the human condition - aspiration and the search for peace - for resolution. I am driven by the need to explore questions about the meaning of my life, the irrational nature of things - lifes absurdity.

 

Statement

My work is a reflection of my thoughts, feelings and experiences. Or indeed my interpretation of others experiences. I am disturbed by much that I see and hear around me and my art is an effort to better understand these experiences and the resulting confusions.

The dominant themes in my work are alienation and the human condition - aspiration and the search for peace - for resolution. I am driven by the need to explore questions about the meaning of my life, the irrational nature of things - lifes absurdity.

There is a certain ritualistic element to my work and my working methods, but this has never been conscious. It is more the result of my methods of working and the practice of having the elements that appear in the work around me for some considerable amount of time before they find their place in a sculpture. I will also create artwork or objects and then leave these to gather dust, or to weather in the garden for some years - to then bring these elements back into a piece of work. This introduces an element of chance and something beyond my control into the piece. I have always enjoyed the apparent 'history' in a piece of art, an artefact, old worn toy or object. For me there is also an element of 'magic' attached to the objects that I enjoy using - something indefinable.

The winged creature, or indeed the wings generally, represent aspiration to flight or freedom - or denial of the same.

I hope that my work will move people to respond and think. The work may start off with an intention to address an issue  ( perhaps human rights as in "Fragile", or relationships as in " The bite  (bitten)" ).  The final piece inevitably has more personal themes, and I like then, to leave the sculpture or image to speak for itself.

I do not deliberately set out to disturb, or upset, but my work often grows from my own disquiet and anxiety, it would not have been done if I had not felt so disturbed and compelled to make it.

I have always enjoyed creating art in boxes - there is a sense of creating another world, a distancing that I enjoy, and which in some of my more disturbing pieces is almost necessary.

I have recently returned to painting in acrylic and I am enjoying a new sense of discovery and freedom in simply creating. I am now happier to leave a sense of ambiguity in the work that I create.

Most recently I have been creating some digital collages and a number of digital paintings that will be available as prints.

Biography

1957born in Nazeing, Essex.
1976Art Foundation Course Loughton College, Essex.
1977Falmouth School of Art, Cornwall. Degree (2.2) Fine Art.
1981Art Teaching Certificate, Goldsmiths College, London.
1984moved to Devon.
1996 to 2012Managed ART WORKS - arts worker.

I have a degree in fine art ( Falmouth, Cornwall ), and an art teaching certificate ( Goldsmiths, London ). I enjoy live theatre, film, animation and all kinds of music. I was a sessional arts worker from 1996 to 2012. I provided art and craft sessions, training, workshops and shows for groups and individuals of all ages and abilities.