Practiced Indifference, 2014

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Julian Penberthy

Julian Penberthy (b. 1964 ) began his interest in fine art as an avid and discerning collector whilst pursuing a career in engineering. He changed direction in his 40s to do a degree in Fine Art at the University for the Creative Arts, Surrey, where he developed his practice of making very innovative imagery using computer generated image (CGI) 3D animation tools. This very meticulous process—not Photoshop or collaged images—involves the painstaking creation of models and scenes using a variety of source materials, as diverse as Andrea Pozzo’s ‘Perspective in Architecture and Painting (1693)’ to fast food restaurants. To this he brings his own research, photography and knowledge of art history. His work is receiving increasing critical attention, and has recently been shown in Discerning Eye, and twice at the Royal Academy Summer Exhibition. 

Julian Penberthy’s imagery tests our perceptions of reality, yet sometimes seems to present fragments from our own memories. Some images are almost like stage sets, but with the viewer having to determine the narrative. Often his images are as memorable or unsettling as an interior from a Kubrick film, although perhaps not so cold or clinical, as there is always an implied human presence. Sometimes with a warm humour or element of absurdity. Traces of Hopperesque atmosphere and light, combine with the Surrealism of Magritte or de Chirico, and the carefully constructed shadows and dense blacks, to make very arresting and thought-provoking imagery.” David Tregunna, Director, IAP Fine Art