The figurative oeuvre of NIGEL KINGSBURY employs apparently simple mark-making to create an ethereal and effortless community. These female forms are based on the women who were close to the artist, those who cared for him and those for whom he cared, effortlessly transformed by pencil and time into mighty gestures of love.
KINGSBURY’s practice was meticulous. The artist initially worked in colour, using TV stills of iconic personalities, contained in a small-scale format. Only later did he shift to the women who surrounded him in daily life. At this point his use of line became more fluid. He juxtaposed loose gestures with short stabs of the pencil. Eraser marks started to reveal sections of drawings as portraits were worked and reworked.
As the scale increased, so the artist afforded himself greater freedom and sensitivity. A compositional balance took shape, with figures morphing into abstraction, and the marks of a dress or the strands of a figure’s hair becoming complex and entangled landscapes in and of themselves. Ironically, as they evolved, his small-scale work refined and intensified, with faces becoming subtle to the point of near-transparency.
Although KINGSBURY’s work has been exhibited in Britain, most notably at Studio Voltaire in London, his work is rarely available for sale. It is included in a number of collections, including Pallant House (Sussex) and The Museum of Everything.
Everything #2, The Museum of Everything (Everything) 2010
Jerwood Drawing Prize, Tour (Cheltenham, Canterbury & Falmouth) 2016
Jerwood Drawing Prize, Jerwood Space
Pen & Art, Pen Station Museum (Tokyo) 2013
The Inner Self: Drawings from the Subconscious, CGP (London) 2014
Side by Side, Southbank Centre (London) 2013
Outside In, Pallant House Gallery (Sussex) 2012/13
Everything #2, The Museum of Everything