For Jon Jones’ latest project, the artist worked with the West Midlands Police Museum to explore the criminal underworld of 19th century Birmingham. His haunting paintings delve into the history of the infamous Peaky Blinders gang, made famous by the successful BBC series of the same name.
Jon starts his work with just a scribble, preferring to keep his sketch loose and give his energy to the final painting. He uses oil on board, with Indian ink and pencil. While creating his art, Jon listens to David Bowie, Arctic Monkey and Nick Cave. He used to work at a special needs school, and the music helps to add some chatter to the relatively solitary environment of an artist’s studio in comparison to a lively classroom.
“I like artists who use thick impasto paint, like Lucian Freud, Leon Kossoff and Frank Auerbach. In my mind, this is how oil painting should be: seeing the brushstrokes and understanding how a painting is constructed.”
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