Freedom from the seas

about Harry Holland

Harry Holland became a painter to avoid the kinds of precise explanations and assertions that words promote, “and partly because it would give the false impression that I know what the meaning of a painting of mine is”. His paintings are suggestive in the sense that they imply situations, events, or relationships that are not directly expressed, this imbues them with an engaging sense of mystery. In the wake of Waterhouse or Bouguereau, many of Harry’s paintings represent nude women landing, falling or floating unabashedly above the Earth. Sky and sea as symbols of peace and freedom. You just have to know the rules for a good landing.

Born in Glasgow in 1941, he spent his childhood in various parts of the UK settling in London in 1949. He trained at St. Martin’s School of Art from 1965-69 where he first exhibited in 1969. In 1973 he moved to Cardiff where he lives and paints today.

As a great admirer of Bob Dylan and his clever and evocative words, Harry thinks that “Mr Tambourine Man” is a very good expression of the artist’s condition. If he was forced to express himself through another means, he would certainly be a songwriter.

“I am able to paint and do nothing else but follow my interests in that activity, and I am part of a community, many of them friends, who find delights and strangeness in the world, and are able, however unsatisfactorily, to express them.



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