Paul Horton Fine Art

About Paul Horton

About Paul Horton

b. Birmingham, 1958

Paul Horton is widely regarded as one of the most popular British artists of his generation. Born in 1958, he has been painting and exhibiting his art for almost 45 years.

After his art teacher at school told him he drew ‘like a Pre-Raphaelite painter’, he became fascinated by the Victorian art movement and discovered an interest in figurative painting which he developed by taking life drawing classes at Bournville School of Art. In 1976 he was awarded a Certificate of Merit by the Royal Birmingham Society of Artists. During the mid-80’s Paul would discover a new source of inspiration and move away from figurative painting although at closer inspection this fundamental understanding of the human form still resonates throughout his work.

After being invited to a local puppet theatre that was about to close its doors for the last time, Paul was given access to the storeroom of puppets and marionettes, what he found laid out before him he would later describe as ‘a lost world’. It was a world full of fables, fairy-tales and folklore that became a cathartic turning point, as he breathed life into the strange and bizarre characters before him and the beginnings of the work you see today.

We are taken on a journey through his own personal iconography and symbolism; the house of love offering protection and sanctuary from what can be a cruel and unforgiving world, the working man who toils for his loved ones without complaint, the benevolent wizard with his lantern as a beacon of hope that offers an escape from the darkness and the man of mystery, whose complexities serve to remind us that there are hidden depths behind everything we see. He also has a desire to represent traditional themes based on the landscape and everyday life that are woven into the narrative he creates. There is a strong emotional connection that opens up his work to a variety of rich interpretation.

In the Autumn of 2013 Paul was rewarded with a major exhibition at the Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery, a rare and prestigious accolade which is testament to his talent and the dedication given throughout his life. He is steeped in art history, citing influences as diverse as the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood, Degas, post- impressionists Van Gogh, Cezanne, modernists such as Chagall and British painter LS Lowry. He is often described as the modern-day Lowry, with his paintings being imbued with a working-class spirit reflecting on Britain’s past industrial age. In spite of this, there are clear and constant truths that only belong to Paul and his audience; he has an innate ability as a storyteller that enthrals those who have come to know and love his work.

In 2016 Paul launched as an independent artist, publishing his own work in partnership with his son Mark, exhibiting in many galleries across the UK. In 2018 they opened the Paul Horton Fine Art Gallery in the Great Western Arcade, Birmingham, a dedicated gallery to his work showcasing new original paintings, a collection of new and rare limited editions and sculptures where he regularly holds exhibitions launching new collections.