The Molesworth Gallery is delighted to present an exhibition of recent work by Gareth Reid, the overall winner of the Sky Arts Portrait Artist of the Year for 2017. As part of the award, Sky Arts commissioned Gareth to paint a portrait of Graham Norton that was added to the National Portrait Collection at the National Gallery of Ireland. The finished portrait went on view in the Millennium Wing of the NGI in March, 2017.
In this, his third solo exhibition at the gallery, Gareth shows a series of monumental heads in charcoal and pastel on large canvasses, where the academic underpinnings of the drawing are always evident. These works are planar and sculptural, focussing on the structural armature of each head. He uses his chosen medium the way a sculptor uses a chisel and callipers, with relationships and contours formed and re-formed through layer upon layer of charcoal and pastel pigment.
The exhibition also features a small collection of more playful works on paper and canvas. These immediate, experimental pieces are vital to the process of expanding the artist’s visual language and are drawn quickly and intuitively in an attempt to avert predictability and preciousness, then heavily edited. They are gathered from a purposefully diverse body of source material, including sculpture, found photography, self-portraiture and the model.
Born in Belfast in 1974, Gareth is a graduate of the Glasgow School of Art. He is a former winner of the BP Travel Award and has exhibited five times at the BP Portrait Award Exhibition in the National Portrait Gallery, London. He lives and work in Glasgow, where he is a visiting lecturer at the Glasgow School of Art.