Adam Taylor is a Pembrokeshire based contemporary artist. His paintings can be described as abstract compositions influenced by the coastal landscape of his surroundings in rural West Wales. He strives to capture the atmosphere and mood of the land, distilling the basic forms into pleasing shapes and colour. He works predominantly in oils, but will use enamel paint and different textures at the beginning of the painting process, producing a final piece which is raw and layered.
How did you get into art?
I've always been into painting and drawing, for as long as I could remember. When I was young, it was the only thing I really excelled at. I remember it was me and this other boy at junior school that could draw Spider-Man - the other children were really impressed and I liked the attention I’d get from being able to draw well!
My Grandmother gave me her old oil paints from the 1960s when I was a teenager, so I started to experiment with them. I’ve always painted since that time.
How would you describe your style? What makes your work special?
I think most artists spend a few years or even their whole life working out what their style is. It took me a while to figure it out to the point where I felt I had my own thing going on. I would describe my work as cold, minimal and abstract.
I’m not too sure what makes me special - but I like to think my work is unique enough to stand out as being mine.
How do you go about developing your work?
I think it’s probably a lot of trial and error - for every painting that works there’s one that doesn’t. It sounds very dramatic, but the days I make a bad painting really get me down.
I never go into a painting with an idea in mind and when I do, it normally doesn’t work out. I just start and see what happens.
I tend to rub as many marks off with a rag as I put down and sometimes the smudges left behind will send me in an interesting direction.
I love a grid - it’s like a safety net. I grid my paintings up into 9 and then work on each rectangle separately but try to make it work as a whole. I like the discord it creates.
I always like to paint over a block of colour, normally blue/green or pink. A bare surface is far too intimidating. I also like to knock it back by rubbing over some bitumen (wood preserver) to distress it a bit before I start.
Who or what influences you?
A Welsh painter called Roger Cecil is one of my favourites, I don’t think he’s particularly well known. When I came across his work it just resonated with me, like finding an old friend you’d lost along the way. He died in 2015 but I’ve been lucky to see a few of his shows.
Another painter I love is Sean Scully. I was really excited last year when he selected my work to be part of a mixed show he was curating at Flowers Gallery, London.
Make us curious. What is planned next?
I’ve just joined a Spanish gallery called Gallery Red, I’m going out there in a few weeks which is really exciting.
The Summer will include a mixed show, closer to home, at Ffin y Parc - my representative gallery here in Wales.
In September I have a joint exhibition with a great sculptor called Lawrence Edwards at AKA Gallery, Cambridge which I’m really looking forward to.
It’s going to be a busy year!