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Stephen Collingbourne 2008

Stephen Collingbourne

onto Corsham then


I trained as a painter. During my career I have made sculpture, drawings, collage, prints and paintings. Often my two dimensional work combined several of these techniques. In recent years I have concentrated on painting with oils, both on paper and wood panels.

Whatever the process, sources that recur in my work are the figure, sometimes in movement, landscape and architecture, sometimes as interior/exterior. During the working process several of these sources may evolve into one piece of work.

My work tends to be spatially ambiguous. It deals with sensation and emotion, expressed through colour, as much as form and structure. In these pieces I seek, through the distillation of recorded and remembered observations, to recapture the original experience.

'Drawing Comparisons' exhibition : from an interview by Dianne King, 26.03.97

The drawings by sculptor Stephen Collingbourne are built in a similar way to sculpture but without any obvious concern with mass and volume. He trained as a painter and has spent many years making two-dimensional as well as three-dimensional works. He sees drawing as an opportunity to explore different aspects or developments not possible in sculpture. His sculpture is contemplative, intellectual, pared down, whereas the drawings are more emotional and sensual, especially in their use of colour. As well as being more spontaneous than sculpture, drawings can form a continuum of formal ideas that can be sustained in short bursts of activity. To create three-dimensional works in metal, as Collingbourne does, however, one has "to make an appointment for it and get on all this kit" - sculpture is a time consuming business.
The content of both his drawing and sculpture comes from landscapes and memory. Specific places and experiences are abstracted, made more general and accessible. Hills and valleys in Corsica, the map of Devon, views from his windows are distilled into simplified and condensed forms.
"Although my work appears 'abstract', many of the forms have evolved through my experience of living in a variety of environments. [For example,] a preoccupation with contrasting curves and straight forms stems partly from Far Eastern architecture and calligraphy...."
Increasingly, these are inverted landscapes, "landscapes of the mind" rather than observed ones. They look inward as much as outward. The forms are deliberately ambiguous and capable of more than one reading, often resembling those in his sculptures.
Collingbourne shares with Matisse and Hodgkin not only an exquisite sense of colour, but also a fascination with windows and frames within frames. Like Hodgkin, he uses colour to create mood, ambience and a certain nostalgic feel. A sense of time, too, can be conveyed through colour - the yellow of glorious childhood summers, the blues and purples of twilight. In Collingbourne's drawings, the exhuberance and panache of the colour are held in tension with very ordered forms.
Drawings might be cut up and reformed into new works, with the different components clearly visible. The combination of large planar areas with more detailed linear elements seems to relate to his earlier steel sculptures which were elegant drawings in space. The austere, volumetric aspects of his recent sculpture are echoed in the series of black and white drawings where the flat dark sections are built up with many washes to give a density of tone comparable with the restrained patination on some of the sculptures.
Collingbourne uses a variety of media and of methods of starting a drawing - he often begins with a monoprint which is drawn onto. He finds pencil inhibiting, preferring to make lines with a stick, the end of a paintbrush, scissors or knife. "There should be nothing you're not allowed to do". The cutting is drawing as much as the markmaking is.

Stephen with paintingApril 2008 - West Linton, Scotland
click on the photo below to see his work [and then click Auto] for a slideshow
1 - 22 Recent Paintings : 23 - 44 Earlier Paintings 1987-2007 : 45 - 66 Earlier Sculptures 1968-1998

2021 New Website -  https://www.stephencollingbourne.com

C.V. - Exhibitions
1943 Born Dartington Devon 1982 "Maquettes for Public Sculpture", Welsh Arts Council
1948-60 Dartington Hall School (touring)
1960/61 Dartington College of Arts 1983 “Built in Scotland” Third Eye Centre, Glasgow.
1961/64 Bath Academy of Art, Corsham City Arts Centre, Edinburgh.
1965 Taught Matthew Arnold School, Oxford Camden Arts Centre, London.
1965/70 Lecturer, Dartington College of Art 1984 Federation of Scottish Sculptures, Talbot Rice Art,
1970 Foundry course, RCA Centre, Edinburgh
1971 Worked at the Serpentine Gallery, London 1985-86 "Scottish Sculpture Open 3", Kildrummy Castle,
1972 Assistant to Robert Adams. (sculptor) Aberdeenshire.
1972/73 Worked and exhibited in Malaysia Cramond Sculpture Park, Edinburgh
1974 Fellow in Sculpture, University College of Wales 1985 "Hands Off", Crawford Arts Centre, St Andrews
1976-98 Lecturer, Sculpture School Edinburgh College of Art “Sculpture Now”, Cramond Sculpture Park, Edinburgh
Edinburgh/Dublin, Edinburgh Festival
Commissions “Four Sculptors in Charlotte Square”, Edinburgh Festival
1974 Leicester University 1986 “One Cubic Foot”, Artspace Aberdeen.
1975 Forestry Commission, Wales Talbot Rice Gallery, Edinburgh
1977 Livingston New Town "Spring Fling", Princess Street Gardens, Edinburgh
1983 Royal Mile Edinburgh 1988 "Five Distinguished Scottish Sculptors", Kingfisher
Gallery, Edinburgh
Public Collections CAVA Festival Exhibition, Edinburgh
Scottish Arts Council 1991 Crawford Arts Centre, St Andrews Festival
Welsh Arts Council 1994 Nine Sculptors in Scotland, Edinburgh Festival
Leicester City Art Gallery 1997-98 “Drawing Comparisons”, Chambers Institute Peebles.
Devon County Council Christopher Boyd Gallery, Galashiels
Hertford County Council Hutchison Gallery, Bishop Auckland
Leicester County Council 1998 ”Installation and Drawing”, K.H.Renludin, Taidmuseo,
Edinburgh City Art Gallery Kokkola, Finland
Art in Hospitals Taideteollinen, Korkeakoulu, Helsinki, Finland
Motherwell District Council
Mixed Exhibitions
Awards and Prizes 1971 Zella 9 Gallery, London
1972 Arts Council of Great Britain Arnolfini Gallery, Bristol
John Moore's Liverpool Royal Academy, London
1973 The British Council 1972 “John Moores” Walker Art Gallery, Liverpool
1975 Welsh Arts Council Russell Centenary Exhibition, London
Arts Council of Great Britain 1973 Sothman Gallery, Amsterdam
1976 Welsh Arts Council Leamington Art Gallery
1977 Royal Scottish Academy Dorset Country Museum
1978 Royal Scottish Academy 1974 Walker Art Gallery, Liverpool
1985 Scottish Arts Council Silversmiths Hall, London
Ipswich Museum, Suffolk
One Man Exhibitions 1975 Torbay School of Art, Devon
1968 Dartington Hall, Devon 1976 RSA, Edinburgh
1971 Zella 9 Gallery, London National Eisteddfod, Wales
1972 University of Leeds Chapter Arts Centre, Cardiff Bangor Art Gallery, Wales
Bluecoat Gallery, Liverpool 1977 Edinburgh College of Art
1973 British Council, Kuala Lumpar Glasgow Group, McLellan Galleries
Fisher Gallery, London Crow Steps, Blairlogie
1974 University College of Wales, Aberystwyth, Wales S.W. Arts, Torquay
1975 Chapter Art Centre, Cardiff RSA, Edinburgh
University College of Wales, Aberystwyth Dartington Hall, Devon
Oriel Gallery (Welsh Arts Council) Cardiff 1978 Scottish Artists, Alamo, London
1977 Plymouth City Art Gallery RSA, Edinburgh
Southampton City Art Gallery Crow Steps, Blairlogie
1979 MacRoberts Arts Centre, Stirling University 1990 Laing Exhibition, Talbot Rice Gallery, Edinburgh.
1990 "Informal Works on Paper" Edinburgh Festival Mall Galleries, London
1991 Sculpture at St Andrew's Festival 1991 Laing Exhibition, Talbot Rice Gallery, Edinburgh.
1993 "Reflection of Landscape" Christopher Boyd Gallery, Mall Galleries, London
Galashiels and Chambers Institute, Peebles D.M. Vaughn, Edinburgh.
1997 “Reflections on Landscape” High Cross House, Scottish Arts Club, Edinburgh
Dartington Hall 1992 Laing Exhibition, Glasgow.
1998 The Plough Arts Centre, Torrington Mall Galleries, London
Galleri Victor, Nykarleby, Finland 1994 The Royal Glasgow Institute of Fine Art
2013 Tweeddale Museum and Art Gallery 1995 City as a Work Of Art. Edinburgh
1997 The Royal Glasgow Institute of fine Arts
Group Exhibitions 1998 British Art Medal Society.
1967 Dartington Hall, Devon Simmons Gallery, London.
1969 Exmouth Gallery, Devon Loughborough College of Art.
1972 Serpentine Gallery, London Pallant House, Chichester.
1973 Kettles Yard, Cambridge Yorkshire Museum
Gainsborough House, Sudbury International FIDEMS Biennale, The Hague
Minories Gallery, Colchester 2007 Edinburgh College of Art Centenary Exhibition.
1976 National Eisteddford, Wales City Arts Centre, Edinburgh.
Welsh Arts Council (touring) Fleming Collection, London.
1977 Campbell and Arnott, Architects, Edinburgh David Patterson Collection, London
1978 "Small Sculpture", Scottish Arts Council (touring) The Alumni Exhibition, University College of Wales,
"Objects and Constructions" Edinburgh Festival Aberystwyth
2009 Aspect Exhibition, Paisley Museum

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