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Simon Manfield - The Open College of the Arts

Simon Manfield

I am an artist, illustrator and educator based in West Yorkshire. My primary interest and one that is integral to my art practice is the process of drawing. The method I employ is traditional in manner, utilising media such as pencil, ink and gouache on paper. My work is representational and illustrative, and concentrates on the figure within the interior and exterior landscape. My drawings often explore narratives that describe disquieting stillness, or a breathless moment caught in time.

My most recent long-term projects have been Memoria Histórica, a series of 60 drawings in pencil, ink and coloured pencil that document the excavation of a mass grave from the era of the Spanish Civil War, and Orcadians: Seven Impromptus, a collection of drawings in ink and gouache illustrating a poem by Orkney poet, George Mackay Brown. Orcadians is still a work in progress. Since 2003 I have maintained a longstanding collaboration with Glasgow-based artists Joanne Tatham and Tom O’Sullivan. Our collaborative work has been shown internationally.

Memoria Histórica has been exhibited in various venues in the United Kingdom and Spain including Imperial War Museum North in Salford, Librería Cervantes in Oviedo, Asturias, Spain, the Eden Project in Cornwall and Glasgow School of Art in Scotland. My work is represented in public and private collections including the Collection Maurizio Morra Greco, Naples, Italy and the Judith Rothschild Foundation Contemporary Drawings Collection, Museum of Modern Art, New York, USA.

Since 2008 I have been a tutor in observational drawing for the University of Bradford’s School of Computing, Informatics and Media and for 6 years have run its drop-in life drawing sessions. My recent post of tutor for the OCA enables me to further impart my passion and experience for the oft-ignored process of drawing to a wider enthusiastic group of learners.


simon manfield