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The Whitstable Oyster Fleet
by Melvyn Evans




Melvyn Evans

Melvyn has had a full career over the last 30 years predominantly as a printmaker and illustrator.
Following periods at college and university (including Goldsmiths and the Royal College (London)) he developed a significant track record in illustration and design, with wide ranging commissions for organisations such as Transport for London, Vodaphone, Halifax Building Society, Marks & Spencer, Network South East, Channel 4 TV.
Melvyn has exhibited widely, especially in the last three years, and gained a range of awards and prizes. These include the Silver Award of the 2011 Serco/ Association of Illustrators Prize for Illustration for Transport for London, silver award at the Best of British Illustration Exhibition at Bankside Gallery, and the Society of Graphic Art print award at the Menier Gallery, presented by Ken Howard RA

Artist's statement:

Much of my work is lino cut relief printing, requiring as it does a stepped process from on-site drawings, through a “simplification” stage that changes the tones of black and white into distinct areas of three or four colours. These are then drawn and cut from a block of lino and printed onto paper. I thrive on this and I'm pleased once again to to feature it in this exhibition for Green Chair Gallery.
My subjects are multi-faceted ranging from the history of London, landscape, allegory, folklore, and the sea. They all combine in many ways to offer comment on the mysteries of our lives, our existence and traditions.
The British coast has been a strong influence on me throughout my life. As my father was in the Navy I was raised in various ports in southern England, predominantly near Portsmouth which I remember well. My father urged me to learn a manual trade to ensure that I would be guaranteed employment whatever else I wanted to do. So off I went to Portsmouth dockyard for a five-year apprenticeship as a fitter and turner, after which I found myself working on aircraft carriers and destroyers, and an 18 month stint on submarines.
I'm interested in our relationship with the landscape, how we've affected it over millennia and the things we've left behind, like the old monuments and chalk figures and what that tells us about us now. The fishing towns of South East England regularly feature, as do the coastal paths of Pembrokeshire, remembered from childhood holidays.
Historic ships – ketches, schooners and other memorable types - especially attract me, and these are often framed by near-abstract landscapes that link to our ancient past. Fishermen landing their catch on Hastings beach or the Old Neptune pub at Whitstable surrounded by Thames barges and oyster smacks, are suffused with this notion of a collective memory.
I think I will end up working my way around the coast, because every area is unique, with different types of boats designed for specific working practices.

The Whitstable Oyster Fleet

Size: 39 X 50 cm

Frame: Unframed

Medium: Linocut print

Price: £170.00

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Other views of this exhibit

Additional images, where available, are displayed below. These may include close ups of details and views from alternative perspectives.

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