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Gerald Shepherd

British (b. 1955) - lives in Andover, Hampshire, UK http://www.ionistart.me.uk/

Gerald Shepherd is a painter, graphic artist, sculptor, digital/multimedia artist, photographer, writer, curator and arts administrator. He has also been involved with science art, performance art, conceptual art, installations and environments (as well as peripheral creative pursuits such as garden design).

He won awards while still at school and also had his first theatre piece performed at this time. However he is largely self taught and right from the outset of his career in the early Seventies has employed extremely novel approaches to picture making; often using mathematics or scientific models to process image sequences across an extended picture plane. He subsequently explored the use of musical formats like sonata and theme and variation forms to sequentially develop images and ideas as well combining visual art with his theatrical and literary interests to create new forms of narrative painting. Gerald Shepherd coined the term Ionist Art in 1976 to cover this work and then began to use the more descriptive term of Meditative Process Art in the early Eighties. He has continued to experiment with evolving and elaborative structures to the present day.

At the end of the last Century the artist began an extended series of landscape and portrait paintings which combine observation with the sequential and developmental formats of his earlier pieces. These pictures are holistic and multi layered portrayals of people and the natural world using symbols, signs and abstracted figurative images to present a broad spectrum of ideas and information associated with the subject matter. He also produces entirely conventional paintings and drawings, initially to commission but now only for relaxation.

Gerald Shepherd's early work in the Seventies was extremely experimental using a wide range of materials not normally associated with art making. He then worked in pencil and acrylic medium for some time before working almost exclusively in oils, acrylic and related media.

Gerald Shepherd founded the pioneering Ionist Art Group in 1987 for anyone who shared his multidisciplinary interests. The large membership came from all the sciences and right across the arts. He edited an art-science fusion newsletter entitled “The Ion Exchange” and arranged regular meetings for artists and scientists to exchange ideas and explore collaborative projects throughout the late Eighties and early Nineties. The artist then moved on to organising exhibitions and art events to campaign on animal welfare and wildlife conservation issues; these activities being the main focus of his curatorial interests for the remainder of the decade. Now married with many other commitments the artist still organises regular exhibitions of modern and experimental art.

Gerald Shepherd's other interests include physics and chemistry, zoology and botany, archaeology, geology, history, mythology, music and horticulture.

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