In association with Piano Nobile we bring you an exhibition of paintings and ceramics on the theme of Punch and Judy by Adam Birtwistle.
6th – 20th October 2017.
Adam Birtwistle is an internationally acclaimed artist who has lived in France for the past 25 years and exhibited regularly in London. His challenging portraits combine wry humour with an unsettling ‘vale of violence’ readily exposed in many of us when the thin veneer of civilized behaviour is tested.
Born in 1959, Birtwistle is best known for his portraits, stark and playful, idiosyncratic and immediately recognizable. Six are on display at Glyndebourne Opera House, East Sussex, and two are owned by the National Portrait Gallery – one of his father, the composer Sir Harrison Birtwistle, and the other of Elvis Costello. Notable works include portraits of the painters Craigie Aitchison RA, Sir Peter Blake RA, critic David Sylvester, pianist Alfred Brendel and composers Michael Tippett, Benjamin Britten and Pierre Boulez.
In 2000 he was asked to paint the portraits of six composers for the opera house’s permanent collection and other commissions include a commission Benjamin Franklin in his tricentenary year (2006).
Paintings inspired by political figures include Abraham Lincoln, Sir Winston Churchill and Charles de Gaulle as well as Cherie Blair and he has painted Jeremy Irons, the architect Michael Hopkins, Dame Marjorie Scardino, the eminent oncologist Dr. Peter Harper &
Flannery O’Conner. Currently a portrait of David Hockney, owned by the Berger Collection, is on tour in the United States.
The secretary of the Royal Academy of Arts, regards Adam Birtwistle, ‘…as one of the best of his generation’ and art critic Godfrey Barker has described him as ‘…one of our most distinguished portrait painters in what is, presently, a Golden Age of portraiture in Britain’.
He is represented by the Piano Nobile in London who are working with the Silk Mill on this show.
Damon Moore (Silk Mill director, with Kate) wrote a poem called The Gathering while invigilating the exhibition.
We made it into a film