July 4th, 2022 - August 11th, 2022
Raised in Northern Ireland during the Troubles, Warren King sought to escape the violent conflict of the time by embracing artistic pursuits. His cousin, a tutor at Queens University Belfast, helped to nurture his creative skills, which blossomed further after relocating to England to pursue Graphic Design at Medway Art School in Kent.
After becoming a full-time visual artist in 2016, King was shortlisted twice for the Emerge and New Emergence art prizes and in July 2021 was one of the recipients of the Turner Open Call Prize for his painting 'Woman With A New Hat'.
The beginning of 2022 saw an influx of international acclaim, with a series of portraits featured in the group exhibition 'Post Mortem - Art Of The After Death' in Denver, Colorado which was swiftly followed by a solo exhibition at the Pringle Of Scotland clothing store in Mayfair, London.
King's work has also provided inspiration to musicians and graced multiple album covers by record label Sonic Cathedral. His paintings have also attracted recognition from literary figures, with his piece 'Divine Light' appears in the book Quotes - Inspirational Quotations/ Creative Responses and an upcoming double-page spread for the 2022 publication of Contemporary Art Collectors, a publication which features 100 of the world’s top emerging artists.
'Martyrs' is a collection of Warren King’s latest body of work, which explores modern notions of faith and sacrifice through abstract portraits of Christian saints and martyrs. The pieces arose from the artist's fascination with those who despite enduring savage torture, refused to renounce their religious beliefs.
IN THE ARTISTS WORDS:
"It is not my intention to portray suffering in a gratuitous way. I am more intrigued by the possibility that the characters I am representing demonstrate a feeling of transcendence, that they are undergoing a physical and spiritual metamorphosis. To me, it is the energizing quality of transformation that motivates me and compels me to capture it on canvas. The process I use - I rarely employ paint brushes and instead utilise large scrapers - reinforces my desire to go beyond the superficial aspects of portraiture. By pushing and pulling layers of paint I am sculpting and moulding the essence of a personality out of nothing."