An English Summer Evening
12th -24th August 2022
Award-winning artist Nik Chinook’s paintings conjure up strange, theatrical and cinematic visions of contemporary Britain. There can be wild animals exploring the suburban Cotswolds one moment and mysterious floating rave-like dancers amongst ancient woodland the next. In one painting, a classic red telephone box lies half-submerged in a woodland pond, its interior evolving into a verdant greenhouse about which dragonflies circle ecstatically.
Nik acknowledges the influences that launch his paintings above descriptive renderings of contemporary life.
“As a child, I was fascinated by the grand paintings of the Renaissance and Baroque which depicted wonderful, and often baffling, scenes from obscure myths, legends or literature. That sense of theatricality, where you could conjure up extraordinary events, sometimes in domestic settings, playing with the staging, lighting, mood, and cast of players was hugely influential. Yes, I think there’s definitely some English whimsy, but there’s also Samuel Palmer, Pieter Bruegel, Poussin, Peter Greenaway, Stanley Kubrick and even Storm Thorgerson. “
After a childhood on the Malvern Hills, and time in Devon and Hong Kong working in art and media, Nik has recently returned to the Cotswolds.
“The English landscape, rural and urban, forms an important thread throughout my work. Those ancient woodlands, motorway margins, seasonal ponds, or suburban streets provide the stage for adventures. It is the glorious dusk, gloaming, or twilight, ‘golden hour’ moments that most spark images and inspire my Art. Works such as the ‘Hidcote Gardens’ painting evoke this mood which is why I have entitled this exhibition ‘An English Summer Evening.’
Nik’s work has been purchased for the UK National Art Collection. He was a finalist at the National Portrait Awards at the National Portrait Gallery, London, and a winner of the Whitworth-Wallis Marine Painting Award. He has won many media/publishing awards and has also appeared several times on the BBC talking about opportunities for artists and once, notably, arguing with Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales about copyright protection.