game with his audience. It’s actually intriguing how he feels the need to chop his reality up into chunks, as if he is watching through a jagged kaleidoscope, but he reserves the lifeline of stepping to the other side of the looking glass where reality starts and is preserved, albeit for the wall’s eyes only. George is no amateur at arts: he graduated in Fine Art at London Metropolitan University and subsequently worked at an art gallery in the Serpentine for three years, before pursuing a career change and accepting a job with Camden-based gaming company Betclic. When they relocated to Gibraltar three years ago, he faced the choice of returning to his Welsh hometown, Abergavenny, or following his employer. And here he is, painting sundrenched landscapes which go down a treat with customers of the prestigious East London gallery DegreeArt which represents him. “Two of my paintings were sold somewhere exotic in the Caribbean. They were part of my final university work, a collection of five canvases, separate but interconnected to form a ‘bigger picture’. Of course galleries don’t disclose their customers to safeguard their own role as middle man between artists and collectors, but I was quite pleased to hear my work had travelled that far.” George’s paintings are well travelled in more than one way, since he is now working on his impressions of touring Vietnam and Thailand. With a full-time job and slow-drying oils, continuity and concentration need to be juggled with work and social commitments. He is fortunate enough to have a home studio with plenty of ventilation for what his website describes as ‘the structural, buttery, timely drying process’ of his style that aims to create surfaces ‘being dominated in a workman-like body of heavily cemented paint’. His early work however was
flat and paint was not exuberant. Furthermore, the style differs considerably from the direction his art has taken recently: he started off with charcoal sketches from busy places, like train stations or public squares, capturing a varied and intermingling humanity, preoccupied with their daily commute or long-haul flights, all rigorously faceless or facing away from the portrayer. Some pencil sketches evolved into oil paintings, like Liverpool Street Station (2006), a maze of brown faces, red or blue clothing outlined in slick black, with the focal point cast on the grey staircase at the top right corner of the composition. These colours return in Sierra Nevada Ski Lift (2012), a series of Stratford Landscapes (2009) and Edinburgh City Castle View (2010). His more recent works cherishes mint and moss greens, bright and saturated sky blues, powder pinks
and dramatic splashes of scarlet red, jet black and mustard brown (Cadiz, 2013). Obsession for texture has inspired George with a new project: close-up photos of his works to highlight depth and layering, mixture of colours and brushstroke directions, forsaking the subject
matters’ relevance in favour of his reverence for the medium, enjoying a life of its own. n For information on prices and commissions, please visit www. georgelwilliams.com, follow @george_ artist on Twitter or like his Facebook page GeorgeWilliamsArt.
GIBRALTAR MAGAZINE • MARCH 2014
Gibraltar Side Street
With a fulltime job and slow-drying oils, continuity and concentration need to be juggled with work and social commitments 47