Paul Kenton

Born: Derby
Lives and works: Devon
Awards: The Prince's Trust (2005)
Exhibitions: Chase Contemporary (2019), Metallique II (2018)
“I aim to transport the viewer. I’m on the constant lookout for energetic locations and inspiration.”

Like the Impressionist painters before him, Paul evokes moods and emotions with his colours, free shapes and energetic lines. Famed for his dazzling cityscapes, he effortlessly captures the hustle and bustle of the city, and, more recently, the world's landscapes. His expansive portfolio of limited edition prints and original oil and watercolour paintings includes his awe-inspiring new Ascension release, which features two panoramic mountainscapes on aluminium. 

Inspiration

Paul's travels have taken him all over the world, from New York to Paris, London and the Alps. The spectacular sights are captured in his dynamic oil paintings, which are created in textured layers on aluminium, copper, wood and canvas. Painting en plein air, he captures the mood and atmosphere of a location through light, block shapes and gestural lines. 

He is not inspired by any particular artists, instead evolving his own style over the last 20 years. His work has been exhibited internationally, including at Chase Contemporary in New York for the launch of London/New York in March 2019. Paul adds: “I find it exhilarating to express the furious movement, artificial lights and vibrancy of a busy city centre.”

Experimentation is key to his success, and his recent Monumental release includes a rare selection of coastal and landscape scenes. In recent years, he has also experimented with exposed metal, which projects the changes in light throughout the day and transforms the piece as the viewer walks past.

His stunning new Ascension collection includes two spectacular mountainscapes that take inspiration from a summer road trip to Mont Blanc, the highest mountain in the Alps and Western Europe. From Chamonix at the base of Mont Blanc, Paul travelled to the top of Aiguille du Midi, which offered spectacular panoramic views of the French, Swiss and Italian Alps.

Paul says: "In most of my paintings I flick paint on, and it does help to create more movement. If you look closely at all of my paintings there is a lot of abstraction within them - it is only when you look from a distance that it all comes together."

Shop Paul's latest limited edition and original artworks here

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Inside the world of Paul Kenton

Paul's purpose-built studio is housed inside an old gasworks that dates back to 1868 and features stained glass windows, industrial steelwork and original brick walls. However, to capture the true feel of the city, he starts his sketches outside.

He explains: "Shadows move fast and light sources appear and disappear in seconds, giving me moments to record what I see. My head is bursting with ideas for paintings. Whilst going through sketchbooks, I can rekindle the emotions and feelings of a particular scene. I paint in layers to create form until I can sense the atmosphere I want, and the structures start to emerge."

To create texture, Paul manipulates the paint on his chosen surface – including canvas, aluminium and wood. For his original paintings, he adds layers of oil paint, each of which is left to dry before the next layer is added. Over the years, his dripping technique has become more controlled as he has experimented with the application. This has created more refined detail and sharper edges, which elevate the metallic elements and give a contemporary finish.

Speaking about his rare inclusion of figures, he says: "People help to create movement within a piece, but I do not go into any detail with the figures. I just try to hint at the presence of people to capture the feeling of movement, liveliness and busyness."

If you like reading about our artists' studios, don't miss our regular Studio Sessions feature in Fine Art Collector magazine. Catch up on previous issues here

From the blog

Style our spring collection

We caught up with our Harrogate gallery for tips on how to style the latest releases from our spring 2022 collection, which features limited edition art from Paul Kenton, Jon Jones and Lawrence Coulson.

Paul Kenton | 365 | Original paintings

The British painter's ambitious project captures each of the 365 days of the year with a single painting of a country, city, or town. This exclusive selection of hand-signed original paintings includes figurative and landscape scenes.

Magazines and brochures

Fine Art Collector | 2020

Showcasing the very best of our artworks, along with behind-the-scenes updates and interviews, the new issue of our Fine Art Collector magazine is a must-read!

Fine Art Collector | Autumn 2019

Showcasing the very best of our artworks, along with behind-the-scenes updates and interviews, the new issue of our Fine Art Collector magazine is a must-read!

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