Patrick Hughes (b.1939)

Biography

Patrick Hughes was born in Birmingham, England in October 1939. He is a self taught artist who plays with perspective, optical illusions and figure-ground relationships. Building upon the work of M.C. Escher, Rene Magritte and Richard Artschwagger, Hughes' paintings form a bridge between painting which is static and two-dimensional, and sculpture which is not.

Hughes held his first exhibition in 1961 and went on to develop his distinct perspective studies in the early years of his career. Calling the main body of his work, Perverspective Hughes' work aims to warp our perceptions by constructing solid space through the use of sculpted painting.

Hughes builds his sculptured paintings using board which is taped together, gessoed and sanded until it is a pristine wall relief which mimics the shape of space. He then goes on to compose images of rectilinear forms such as buildings, books, doorways, boxes and gallery walls. The resultant painted reliefs baffle his audience by demonstrating how deceptive appearances can be. His surrealist horizons imply deep space whilst the surface of the painting appears flat. Yet on walking towards these seemingly flat paintings they loom out at us, creating a disorientating, 'moving' experience. Hughes challenges the assumptions of our eye and our brain, raising important questions about human perception and the subconscious.

Soon after his first appearance on the London art scene Hughes began exhibiting with Angela Flowers Gallery and continues to do so today. In addition, he has taken part in many solo and group exhibitions across the UK and in America. As well as painting, he has also written and collated three books on visual and verbal rhetoric.