Guy Denning belongs to a generation of artists remembering the best period in the history of art. In His paintings you can see the longing for a return to the sensitivity and perfection of great Renaissance artists. Guy Denning portrays man in all its beauty and ugliness, often calling up associations of an inferno and suffering but bringing true humanity and mastery to every single line of his artwork. This is a vivid drama of exsistence.
[Graphics by Guy Denning source: artist’s portfolio]
Guy Denning says he had been interested in art since he was a small child and is a self-taught painter. He applied to study at several art colleges during the 1980s but was refused entry. His paintings have been shown in many solo and mixed exhibitions. Notable solo shows include ‘Purgatorio’ at Brooklynite, New York; ‘Inferno’ at MAGI’900, Bologna and ‘Behemoth’ at St Martin in the Fields, London. His work is held in several important public collections, including the Politics Department of Bristol University, the Political Science Department at Galway University and the MAGI’900 Museum of Contemporary Art, Bologna. Denning’s early work included an interest in the work of Franz Kline and was characterised by powerful, expressive brushstrokes in mainly abstract paintings. More recently he has combined earlier influences with an increasingly figurative style of painting. The human figure features strongly in his latest work and he uses this subject matter to convey powerful emotions, often with political overtones. The Icarus series of works is an example of this approach. Structurally his work is very dynamic showing a concern for strong draughtsmanship with a spontaneous application of colour. He does not work to set motifs, but makes paintings and drawings from observation and photographic reference.
Denning uses not only powerful brush strokes to express his emotions deeply but also scratches the paint to show the audience the intensity of the emotions he is trying to portray with his artwork. He also sometimes uses stencils and collaged text. He has stated that his work has been significantly informed by the subject of war “When I was about 11 or 12 I came to France with my parents and they took me to the war cemetery at Verdun. It was the most significant thing that ever happened to me. — Wikipedia
Guy Denning was born in North Somerset in 1965. He has been obsessed with visual art since childhood and started painting in oils at the age of eleven after receiving a set of old paints from a relative that had grown bored with them. Through the 1980s he was repeatedly unsuccessful in his applications to study painting at degree level but continued painting whilst studying art history with the Open University and learning painting technique from older painters he knew in the west of England. From 1992, he exhibited across Britain. Since 2007 he has also exhibited in the United States of America, Germany, Italy and France. His paintings have been shown in numerous solo and mixed exhibitions. Notable solo shows include ‘Purgatorio’ at Brooklynite Gallery New York, ‘Inferno’ at MAGI’900 Bologna and ‘Behemoth’ at St Martin in the Fields London. His work is held in several public collections, including the Politics Department of Bristol University, the Political Science Department at Galway University and the MAGI’900 Museum of Contemporary Art, Bologna. He has also been invited to work on a variety of community urban art projects and has developed a distinctive style that builds images from drawing and stencilled text. In 2007 he moved to Finistere in France where he continues to work towards future exhibitions.
07.08.2014. Finistere. France