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BIOGRAPHY


Ian was born on 11th July 1933 in Newcastle-upon-Tyne, later moving to Leeds. He attended Leeds Modern School and then the progressive Leeds College of Art until 1953. There followed two years of National Service and from 1956 -1958 Ian attended the Royal College of Art in London, graduating in Print Making from the School of Graphic Design. Whilst at the Royal College, Ian met fellow artist Ray Fawcett and Anna Dubenska, whom he subsequently married in 1962.

Ian and Anna initially lived in Chiswick, West London but then moved to Shepperton, as their family grew. Shepperton is at the end of a train line from Waterloo and back in the 1960ís the village was a quiet place and still quite rural, surrounded by fields and market gardens.

Ian was interested in the outdoors from an early age when he and his older brother climbed trees in Leeds and then explored the Yorkshire countryside on bicycles. Ian loved bird watching and fishing, especially for brown trout. As a boy he fished streams and burns in Yorkshire and Scotland. In later years, he and Ray Fawcett fished for trout at the London Reservoirs and on Wessex chalk streams.

In 1970 Ian had an appointment as a visiting Professor of Art at the University of Wisconsin-Parkside, USA. Ian sketched and photographed the landscape of the mid-West and on return to the Britain, I think he found parallels with the Thames Valley at the fringes of London.





From the early 1970ís Ian sketched the landscape around Shepperton, recording changes such as the M3 motorway, Heathrow expansion, increased urbanisation but also the quality of light through trees and on roofs. These sketches became the Suburban Landscapes series of paintings and etchings.

From the early Seventies the family regularly stayed at the Lyme Regis holiday cottage owned by Ianís colleague Richard Robbins. We mostly visited in winter time when we would go fossil hunting along Monmouth Beach, Black Ven and at Charmouth. Ian recorded the changing light and scenery through drawings and photographs, later creating paintings and etchings.

In 1978 Ian and Anna bought an old stone cottage in Melbury Abbas, Dorset. Anna and Ian renovated the building as a holiday home and created a lovely garden on the fertile Greensand soil. The family spent many holidays there and Ian explored and drew the Dorset landscape. During this period of time Ian created his Tranquil Gardens series of paintings.

In December 1984 the family sold both the family house in Shepperton and the Dorset cottage, moving to Shimpling, Suffolk. The plan was to stay for a few years and then take early retirement at the age of 55. In preparation for retirement and life as a full time artist, Ian developed a beautiful series of paintings based on abstract blocks of colour, clearly intended for the commercial market.

Travelling and overnight stays in London took its toll on Ian and the couple decided to move to London to be near Middlesex Art School. Ian and Anna moved to Muswell Hill in September 1986 but in October Ian was diagnosed with melanoma. He died on 31st December 1986, at the age of 53.

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