Tim Fowler’s dynamic, large scale semi-abstract works and smaller studies explore the power of texture and tone to communicate ideas and emotions. After deconstructing his subject he rebuilds it piece by piece in a signature palette of vivid hues, experimenting with opacity, textural juxtapositions, finishes and light. While he references nature and humanity, he leaves ample space for ambiguity on every canvas and invites the viewer to complete the work with their own creative response.
While he was still a child, already interested in drawing and painting, Tim stumbled across the 1996 biopic of pop icon and neo-expressionist painter Jean-Michel Basquiat. The combination of their shared cultural heritage and the infectious sense of freedom in Basquiat’s approach made a huge impact on Tim, and seeing the film was a seminal moment for him; where art had been a hobby, becoming an artist became a goal. 10 years later he graduated with a BA in Fine Art and embarked on a career in art.
Using found and made images as a starting point Tim builds layers of pigment, adding abstract fragments, bold marks, broken lines and liberal strokes to create contours and features. He works intuitively, combining oil, acrylic, spray, enamel and graffiti inks. Each composition is a physically demanding event which can occasionally require scaffolding and some unexpected tools, from broad brushes to long handled marker paint mops, to effect purposeful marks, strokes, drips, scrapes and smears across the canvas.
The skulls began as what Tim describes as ‘default portraits’, stripping away the physical identity of the subject to liberate their energy and convey it through vivid colour and spontaneous mark making. Although they were experimental works the response was strong and he began work on ‘Memento Mori - 100 skulls’, a project which involved him painting 100 skulls live in a gallery space over just one week. At the end of the week, he sold every painting within two hours.
Tim’s interest in botanical subjects was kindled when a fellow artist brought some banana plants into a studio to overwinter. He became fascinated by these spectacular tropical plants and started to introduce elements of their shape and energy into a series of abstracts he was working on. After being awarded Arts Council England funding to research links between plantation and cash crops and his own Caribbean heritage, Tim was offered a residency at the ground-breaking company Touchlight Genetics. Here he was able to interact with scientists in a lab setting to explore his newfound passion, and Kew Gardens and the Eden Project also provided him with inspiration and opportunities.
Tim has sold his work in the UK, Europe and the USA. His collectors include Touchlight Genetics, BT, singer-songwriter Mahalia, and the New Walk Museum in Leicester.