Lemmon is a self-taught artist who recently won the RK Harrison prize at the National Open Art Competition. He works from his own photography acquired whilst soaking up the culture and colour of city life. His energetic technique – painting very rapidly with vigorous strokes of oil paint in vivid hues – embodies the immediacy and spontaneity of his subject. Characterised by eccentric angles and ruthless cropping, his paintings reverberate with a seductive, cinematic urgency.
The subject matter is inspired in part by the work of photographer William Eggleston and his ‘snap-shot aesthetic’. This influence brings a distinctive voyeuristic impression to the celebration of bar culture and modern leisure-time in his work, reflecting, perhaps, the media’s infatuation with the hidden camera and fly-on-the-wall scrutiny. “What interests me most,” he asserts, “is conveying atmosphere and mood rather than individual people or locations. I want the viewer to feel immersed in my paintings, as though they are actually there, imagining their own characters and narratives.”
Lemmon Graduated as a Fine Artist from Kingston University in 1998. He won The National Open Art Competition 2009. The selectors, chaired by Gavin Turk of YBA notoriety, and supported by Catherine Lampert, former director of the Whitechapel Gallery, James Stewart of Zimmer Stewart in Arundel, and David Barrie, had the difficult task of judging the1300 artists from all corners of the UK.
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