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Arthur Redhead

Biography

Arthur Redhead was born on May 5, 1955, in Zeltweg, Austria, the second son of Hermine Ragger and Robert Arthur Redhead, an English soldier with the British occupying force. He discovered his love of art and painting at the age of six. At 14 he began attending art courses and workshops. His teachers, and the great masters of the history of art like van Gogh, Gaugin, Turner, Monet, Picasso and above all Cézanne, became his role models. Favourite motifs were scenes from the countryside around Zeltweg, especially a friend’s farm.

In 1978, his brother Robert was killed in a tragic car accident, and Arthur’s focus on painting became even more single-minded, as he took refuge in his art in an attempt to cope with his brother’s death.

Redhead had his first major solo exhibition at the “Haus der Begegnung” in Vienna in 1979. The pictures in the show centered around the “World of Work”, a theme he would continue to pursue intensively for the next 15 years. During this time the graphic aspect of his art, as seen in numerous wood- and linocuts and linear acrylic paintings, became increasingly pronounced.

From 1990 to 1997, Redhead had a number of exhibits in England, with shows in Cambridge, Coventry, Guildford, Leicester, York, Uppingham and Loughborough. There he met famed gallery-owner Mr. Magpie, who embraced Redhead’s work enthusiastically. Redhead’s favourite subjects in England were, initially, Coventry Cathedral, and later the shopping centres, where he studied human movement and recorded what he saw.

Another key experience in Redhead’s life and art was his trip to India in 1994. His pictures became “brighter” as the red and orange tones of the East came to dominate the many watercolours he created with rapid strokes of a wide brush, in a process more graphic than painterly. India also marked the beginning of a deeper and more concentrated study of “movement of the human figure”, an aspect still very much present in his work today.

In 1995, as Redhead’s graphic work was becoming increasingly widely known, he was invited to exhibit at the Austrian pavilion at the International Print Biennial in Varna, Bulgaria. In the same year he participated at the Summer Exhibition of the Royal Academy of Arts in London.

Redhead gives workshops and courses in art in many cities throughout Austria and occasionally abroad. On June 1, 2007, he was awarded the title of professor by the Austrian Federal Ministry of Education, Art and Culture in recognition of his contributions to the field.

At work

Arthur Readhead spent a week experimenting almost non stop with the new techniques made possible by the PrintoLUX inks, in a process he termed “tintografik”, or tintography. “I am not someone given to euphoria at every new thing, so my wonder and amazement are those of a sceptic.”