Gallery 286 is delighted to be exhibiting Daniel Shadbolt’s New Paintings in a one-man show this June. Well known as a teacher at Heatherley’s, a bastion of traditional art-school values in Chelsea, Daniel has proved a popular exhibitor at 286 in group shows of Still Life and Self Portraits, both genres in which he excels.
The New Paintings exhibition features fine examples of both these strands in Daniel’s practice but the essential element that connects all the paintings is his studio. Working from a house in West London for the past few years has proved inspirational, and the interiors that he depicts are the distillation of an artist’s life.
Illuminated with a fairly constant indirect light, it is the inclusion and exclusion of objects that make the radical differences to the compositions. The structure of the rooms may be recognisable from one canvas to another, but the viewpoint changes and the visitors to the rooms come and go – a man with a violin, an elegant bearded figure in a grey suit, a slender young woman in jeans, or the artist himself in a variety of guises. The still life set-ups hint at the seasons changing.
Everything an artist does is a matter of choice, from the selection of the subject matter to the colour of the paintmark he decides to place next to the previous one, and Daniel has that ability to make the right choices, so the eye moves with pleasure over the surface of the canvas, enjoying his depiction of volume, colour, and the light which animates them. These are the sort of paintings that it would be a pleasure to live with. You get the feeling too that, if one were to commission a portrait from him, the process would be enjoyable and the outcome satisfactory. His sitters have a relaxed look about them brought about, no doubt, by his easy temperament or, perhaps, by his excellent taste in music?
Gallery 286 is located in a terraced house on the bustling Earl’s Court Road. First time visitors expecting a conventional gallery set-up are pleasantly surprised to find themselves in a well-appointed Victorian house, home to the gallery’s owner Jonathan Ross, his artist wife Camilla Shivarg and their two exotic cats. On winter nights an open fire and an excellent glass of wine awaits them and, in the Summer, Camilla’s prize-winning garden provides the perfect overspill to the popular private views. These have a soirée feel about them, without a trace of hard-sell, and are frequently attended by a number of the regular gallery artists and local characters.