IAN MASTIN is an exceptional Still Life artist, working in the tradition of the Dutch and Flemish Masters of the 17th century. Remarkably, he is self taught and he was in his thirties before he began to paint seriously. He has studied the techniques and compositions of the old masters and honed his skills through disciplined study and practice.
Ian was born in Leicestershire in 1949. His family subsequently emigrated and he grew up in Queensland, Australia.Ian had no involvement with art as a child and it was only in the mid 1980s that he began to sketch for recreation. He had an obvious gift and was invited to exhibit his work in a Brisbane gallery where he first experienced success. In 1991 he returned to Britain with his Scottish-born wife and their children and settled in East Lothian. It was here that he picked up a paintbrush for the first time and after a year of experimentation in fundamental techniques, he committed himself to painting full-time.
He discovered still life in the traditional style; this gave him the direction he had been seeking and the passion to pursue his artistic goal of excellence in the genre. Plainly influenced by old Masters, his work nevertheless has a timeless quality that is not bound by tradition or convention. An old, much loved and worn book or bowl can bring as much joy for him to paint as a most complex composition.In 2001, Ian and his wife returned to Queensland but we are delighted that he continues to exhibit at Tolquhon. His paintings may be found in collections around the world.
"I am excited by the future, but am captivated by the deep roots of the past. I am fascinated by the relationship between inanimate objects and our origins. In still life painting I am expressing both a passion and an obsession. For me, a simple relic of some antiquity immediately stirs within a hunger to connect with its provenance. I wonder at the lives of those who created and used these humble utilitarian items, no doubt lives of hardship, struggle, love, frustration, anguish and joy, of precious relationships and powerful emotions. In attempting to render these wonderful, unpretentious artefacts of the past, I feel I am somehow connecting with and paying homage to the fortitude of those countless forgotten souls upon whose endeavours we stand and thrive today."