Adrian Sykes’ landscapes and cityscapes are formed from a combination of his memories of real locations and his own imagination. His detailed scenes, in some ways reminiscent of a Bruegel painting, have elements giving a sense of narrative and surrealism to the work with recurring motifs such as winding paths, bridges, ladders and lone houses.
Many of his paintings pay homage to the beauty and diversity of the varied places he has lived and travelled. This current body of work has been influenced by an amalgamation of different European countries as well as some quintessentially English landscapes. He allows these inspiring places to infiltrate his work subconsciously from his bank of memories, resulting in an image conveying a feeling of or atmosphere of a place rather than any distinct location in particular.
His favoured subjects are buildings, and Adrian casts them in a new and intriguing light through his unique style. His playful moving of, or exclusion of, some buildings and features makes a wonderful composition in a ‘Capriccio’ style. His incorporation of humour and quirkiness gives the work a lightness and optimism and he describes how he aims to capture a “sense of hopefulness and peace”. This interestingly is balanced by an unnerving feeling that some of his works might be more likely to be a setting for a dark fairy-tale. It is this openness to interpretation of his work which makes this such a powerful collection of paintings.
Born in 1970 in Merseyside, Adrian studied at Bath College of Fine Art. Now permanently based in Bristol, but he travels extensively, on his quest for new inspirational locations for his work.