Albert Irvin RA Visit

During the Lent Term the esteemed British painter and printmaker Albert Irvin came to speak of his distinguished career as an artist, view our Art Scholars' exhibition and tour the Art Studios.

Albert approached the entrance to the Art School with a warm smile and immediately became engaged and enthused by the lively artistic activity within. As an urban painter, who has spent most of his life in London, we were all greatly impressed that Bert (as he prefers to be called) was granting us his time.

I had arranged Bert's visit to coincide with our Art Scholars exhibition, which Beatrice Haines, this year's Artist in Residence and the scholars had deftly curated within the Mount House Gallery. Kitty Fuller, Coco Lloyd and Jocelyn Roberts joined Beatrice and I, to escort Bert around their inventive show.

The scholars discussed their recent drawing based investigations and discoveries with him, amongst their resolved paintings and prints on display. Within the excited hum of the Art School, Bert then met members of the Upper and Lower Sixth Form, while they continued with their current paintings, prints and drawings.

He discussed their work with our students and gave invaluable advice regarding relevant techniques and approaches. Later, we gathered in the Lecture Room to view an insightful slideshow regarding Bert's recent Inextinguishable exhibition at Gimpel Fils Gallery, London. His latest vivid and energetic acrylic paintings were created over the last year within his East End studio, where he has worked for over four decades.

Bert explained his inspirations, which range from music, artists; such as Matisse; Van Gogh; the action painters Pollock; de Kooning and Kline, to the names of London streets; landmarks and, life itself. He discussed his process of working, how colour is a crucial element in his art and his continuing exploration of the non-figurative form.

Bert's compelling company and enthusiasm was felt by all who met him that day, and we are extremely grateful to him for sharing his knowledge, life long commitment and expertise in art with us.

By Jon Parnham, Head of Art

To view a short profile and further images please click here