Simon Hopkinson

Growing up in Yorkshire I discovered Northern cityscapes in my teens. After moving to Bristol in the mid 1980s, I explored some of the city's less cherished spots, using the photos for my first acrylic paintings in 1994. I am self taught. Recent shows include:

The Other Art Fair Bristol
26th to 29th of July

Solo exhibition at The Poole Lighthouse main gallery


Strange Times

A series of paintings which aim to reflect the menace and uncertainty of the age. Using my photos as a guide, I aim to paint something a bit freer than photorealism and to sometimes give the work a more surreal quality. I am more concerned with atmosphere, colour and socially relevant content than with concept or form.

Krash “Krash”

A footbridge on the edge of Poole. I was affected by the mysterious, slightly threatening feel of the night-time surroundings and the sound of fast moving traffic from beyond the fence. The arrow was pointing down the unseen road as if towards a car crash. The scene for me represents a fear of fate, and a sense of speeding towards the unknown.

Off-Road “Off-Road”

Painted for my Views of Poole show which ran for a couple of months in the main gallery at The Poole Lighthouse. My aim had been to find symbolic, relevant subjects in the town and its sprawling suburbs, and this image is one of my favourites. The car had come to rest some distance from the road after ploughing through shrubs. Now adorned with police tape, it remained at its crash scene into evening near the edge of some shadowy trees, as if to show the fragility of normal.

Contactless “Contactless”

An image of UK lockdown limbo, painted from a quick phone shot. I was walking alone to the supermarket, my first trip outside in a while, and the streets had an eerie twilight zone feel to them.

Covid Regime “Covid Regime”

An early new normal superstore scene, my first encounter with UK distancing rules. Shopping seemed surreal all of a sudden, removed from everyday life, and leaving the house felt problematic, a trip towards some great unknown; though in one way at least it was still the same country out there: what could be more British than a queue?

The Land That Time Forgot “The Land That Time Forgot”

A toy skeleton I bought and its weaselly, undead friend, a macabre piece of taxidermy. Darkness wears a poppy - less symbolic of peace or remembrance these days than of toxic nationalism - and Saint George’s Cross flies over the landscape. The title is borrowed from the book and film of the same name - a war retro dinosaur fantasy, also known as Dinosaur Island.