With this week’s opening of his exhibition in the Fleming Gallery, artist Andrew Wykes returns to TASIS England, where he taught art in both the Lower and Upper School for ten years during the 1980s and ‘90s.
Andrew is a master teacher and painter, whose passion for the poetry of the landscape is evident in all he does. This passion not only animates his work with urgency and dynamism, but also imbues his imagery with a certain poignancy and sense of the sublime. His paintings reveal the essential processes of seeing and responding and invite us as viewers to partake in this vital artistic activity. Students will interact with Andrew as he discusses his current collection of paintings and drawings on display in The Fleming Gallery, Hinterlands, and shares his insights into his life as an artist.
“My main premise is to create a balanced dialog between the intellectual and emotional,” Andrew explains. “I paint the geography of where I find myself, in the United States or overseas in Britain, Ireland, and most recently, Jamaica. These places are diverse and don’t always have any deep affinity for me, yet there is a bond … these works were made on site and in the studio. The medium I work with varies – oil, acrylic, tempera, and collage. However, the goal is always the same: to make an equivalent and authentic response to the places I have experienced, and to then translate that experience of the three-dimensional landscape to the flat surface of my paintings.”
Mr. Wykes studied at Richmond upon Thames College as well as Epsom School of Art and Design, where he received his undergraduate qualifications in fine art. His graduate studies were completed at American University, in Washington, D.C., where he received his MFA in painting. He has taught art for over thirty years in schools and universities in the UK, Belgium and the US. Wykes has shown his work nationally and internationally including in London and New York.
He has been the recipient of three Minnesota State Arts Board Artist Initiative Grants in 2009, 2013, and 2015. He holds the Agnes Hulburd Conger Prize for Excellence in the Humanities from Hamline University for outstanding research as a painter. In 2009 he was awarded a fellowship at the Ballinglen Arts Foundation in Mayo, Ireland. He is one of four Minnesota landscape painters featured in filmmaker Kristen Lowe’s documentary Painting the Place Between. Wykes is currently a Professor of painting at Hamline University in St. Paul, Minnesota.