Duncan Allen

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My art is colourful, my art is dark. It’s a kind of surreal pop art.

I have painted various subjects over the years – cats, magical crystal balls and statues – but mostly trees, leafless trees. I feel a natural connection with them, and now have a small collection. Studying trees can reveal many different personalities, almost human-like features, and I try to represent their characters in my paintings.

Also I create digital art, with popular works including ‘Beach Huts’, ‘Pavilion’ and ‘Brighton & Hove (actually!)’, all part of my Brighton & Hove collection. My latest piece celebrates Worthing. These ‘maps’ start with borders, and then I add the text, finding a suitable font and significant colours, maybe county emblems or a country’s flag.

One of the things I enjoy most about painting is the process, which at times can be an intense and invigorating experience. I sometimes find myself completely immersed in what I am doing. In that moment time ceases to exist and there is an urgency to see the painting completed. Paintings are rarely quick, though, and can take weeks to finish. Sometimes my arm is like a free spirit, making the brush dance around the canvas, splashing on colour, a bit here, a bit there. With detailed artworks, however, I am in complete control and seriously focused. I am at my best in the moment, fully involved and creating.

I exhibit throughout Brighton and Hove, and have been part of the Artists Open Houses festival for the past few years. Currently I have paintings and digital art on display at Gallery 92 in Hurstpierpoint; Ming Art Gallery in Hove; Gallery BN5 in Henfield; and now here in The Montague Gallery in Worthing.

One could say I don’t have a consistent identifiable visual style… It’s what I feel at the time, what excites me, and learning something new, applying this knowledge to the next painting.

I hope you enjoy looking!