Self Portrait in Hood

Timothy Gatenby (b. 1987) is a British artist whose work focuses on the subjects of nostalgia, dreams and memory. Working predominantly in oil paint there is a certain reverence to classical painting acknowledged in Gatenby’s work but evidently subverted.

Since training under Charles Cecil in Florence, Italy, Gatenby has exhibited regularly around the UK. His work has been displayed at the National Portrait Gallery, Royal Academy of Art, Royal Society of British Artists, Royal Birmingham Society of Artists and Columbia Threadneedle Prize.

Through his limited palette and the ghostly distortion of imagery a sense of foreboding lurks behind the softly executed painting surface in Gatenby’s world. An interest in the ethereal is manifested in his documentations of everyday rituals where blurry painterly handling is juxtaposed with more abstract mark-making exploring the oblique nature of the subjectification of reality. In Gatenby’s work an investigation into how memory perceives events is undertaken through observations based-in nature combined with unconscious recollections of these moments. 

In the Heroes series childhood memories of fantastical icons from popular culture come to the fore as characters from Gatenby’s youth are humorously reinterpreted with both a sense of nostalgia and wistful charm. The paintings subversively reflect a homage to the memory of more innocent times whilst being tainted by the loss of these years.