Graham Dean first worked with Edinburgh Printmakers after being asked to contribute to the Interactions folio, commissioned by the National Trust and published by Edinburgh Printmakers in 1995. Dean was...
Graham Dean first worked with Edinburgh Printmakers after being asked to contribute to the Interactions folio, commissioned by the National Trust and published by Edinburgh Printmakers in 1995. Dean was then invited back to make further works in the studio, producing a number of works in the Edinburgh Printmakers studio over several years.
The studio were particularly keen to work with Dean as his large-scale watercolour paintings with translucent washes of colour were particular appropriate for recreation in lithography and screenprint. Powerful, bright hues and the application of colour in multiple, transparent layers are central to Dean’s art. Dean employs a technique that he calls ‘reverse archaeology’ where contrasting layers of paint are built up to achieve a density and brilliance of colour, merging the forms with the organic process of paint spreading through paper.
Dean also works with collage in many of his works, tearing away and reassembling parts of the same composition. This lends each image a rawness and supports the dramatic qualities of the works.
Dean is interested in characters who use their bodies as vehicles for expression: Beautiful models, athletes, crazy bondage enthusiasts, identical twins, people with skin imperfections. He often depicts the figure in dramatic, cinematic lighting to abstract the body and create an atmosphere beyond its literal representation.
Graham Dean (b. 1951 Birkenhead, Merseyside) studied at the Laird School of Art from 1968-70 and Bristol University, Faculty of Art and Design from 1970-73. Deans’ work spans over forty years, his first solo exhibition showing at Bristol Arts Centre in 1973. Amongst other early exhibitions he showed at the Museum of Modern Art, Paris, in 1977, Whitechapel Art Gallery in 1978, John Moore’s 12 in 1980, ICA London in 1982; from 1982 to 1997 he was featured in a world-touring exhibition showing in over 50 of the top museums, alongside Rauschenberg, Stella, Richter and Tapies, among others. He also exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1997 and 1999, the National Portrait Gallery in 2001, and from 2005 to the present day at the TEFAF, Maastricht and Pan Art Fair Amsterdam.
Graham Dean has had over 50 solo shows, including at the Basel Art Fair in 1987, the Nerlino Gallery, New York, in 1989 and 1990, and the Bath and Brighton Museums and Art Galleries, 1996, 1999, and 2012. More recent solo shows have been at Waterhouse and Dodd in London from 2005 to 2012 and at Frans Jacobs and Judith Wolberink, Amsterdam, from 2006 to 2014.
Graham Dean has received several awards and honours. In 1991, he received the Senior Award in Painting at the British School in Rome also known as ‘Prix de Rome’ and in 2000, specifically for his drawings, the ICCD studio residency in Trivandrum, Kerala, India. In 2003 he received the International Fellowship Award at the Vermont Studio Center, USA.