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Artists CV    artwork
Keith Garrow

BORN: 1962 Newcastle upon Tyne

1984-7 Nottingham Trent University BA(Hons) Fine Art
1983-4 Barnsley School of Art Foundation Course

1987 Margaret Bryan Travel Scholarship

Gulbenkian Gallery, Newcastle upon Tyne
Bede Monastery Museum, Jarrow, Tyneside
Bonington Gallery, Nottingham

'Beautiful Day', Escape Bar and Art Gallery, London
Harborne Gallery, Birmingham
'Crossing Cultures', Cranleigh Arts Centre, Surrey
Castle Eden Gallery, County Durham
Cafe Gallery Projects, London
Battersea Contemporary Art Fair


My paintings inhabit the ground between abstraction and figuration, not concrete enough to be one thing only, but able to be different things to different people; a springboard for the imagination, like the fleeting shapes we see in clouds. What the viewer brings to the work plays an important part in what they see and what they take away with them.

I begin my work by making random marks on the canvas, without any preconceived ideas at all of what the finished work is going to look like. Chance and accident are used to provide the starting point for each work. I find that the shapes, structures and relationships created in this way have much more power and resonance than anything I could create by conscious design alone.

The paintings are in a constant state of flux. The things I choose to develop, the shapes I leave, the elements I paint over, the colours I use - all these things are inevitably a product of my own experience, memories and environment. The paintings are built up in many layers, with fragments of earlier work contributing to the finished piece in ways that could not have been conceived when the paint was first put down. The painting is complete when there is nothing more I feel the need to change.

The names of the paintings are intended to hint at an element of what the work suggests to me, but should not be taken as a clue to ‘meaning'. To try to articulate meaning and content has no purpose for me. If I could do that verbally there would be no need for me to paint. The paintings are what they are and what matters to me is the process of creating them.