Chris Gollon (1953 - 2017) is an established name in British painting, represented by IAP Fine Art since 1993. Born in London, he enjoyed many solo museum exhibitions in the UK, museum acquisitions including the British Museum, and public commissions. He has exhibited at Art Chicago and also with Yoko Ono, David Bowie and Gavin Turk in ROOT, a crossover exhibition of contemporary music and art created by Thurston Moore of Sonic Youth, at the Chisenhale Gallery, London. In 2004, he exhibited with Bill Viola, Tracey Emin and Craigie Aitchison in the exhibition Images of Christ for the Third Millennium in St Paul’s Cathedral, London.
His work continues to attract increasing acclaim in the national press and specialist arts press: Financial Times, The Times, The Independent, The Guardian, Gramophone, Aesthetica, BBC Radio 4, BBC Radio 3's 'Free Thinking' , BBC1 News. In 2009, Chris Gollon and his work were featured on Alan Yentob’s BBC1 programme Imagine, with the programme following him through painting a commission. His film collaboration with JABOD, entitled Kaleidomorphism One, was premiered in London at the East End Film Festival (2008). Novelist Sara Maitland’s book Stations of the Cross (Continuum, London & New York, 2009) was wholly inspired by and features Gollon’s Fourteen Stations of the Cross, which were commissioned by the Church of England for a grade-one listed Sir John Soane church in East Londonn next to the V&A Museum of Childhood. In 2010 Chris Gollon: Humanity in Art by art historian Tamsin Pickeral was published, with an endorsement by Bill Bryson OBE.
In 2009, Chris Gollon was invited to become both a Fellow of the Institute of Advanced Study, Durham University, and its First Artist in Residence in order to work on the Being Human project with some of the world's leading thinkers. Following the success of that sojourn, he accepted an invitation to return as Artist in Residence at St Mary’s College in spring 2011. In late 2011, the Hollywood film makers of the Twilight Saga leased the copyright of one of his paintings to use it as an integral part of the story in Breaking Dawn: Part One. From 2013-14, he collaborated with Grammy-nominated classical virtuoso musician and occasional composer Yi Yao, producing And It Came To Pass, an installation comprising a 41ft (12.5m) long painting and a 20-minute musical piece, which was premiered very successfully at the prestigious Henley Festival in July 2014. In the same year, his major solo show in Guildford Cathedral Incarnation Mary and Women from the Bible was so well received that it become a major touring exhibition to British cathedrals, including Norwich, Chichester, Durham and Hereford.
During the period 2015 - 2017 he enjoyed an experiment in artistic 'boundary crossing' with Irish singer-songwriter Eleanor McEvoy. Her lyrics inspired new paintings and these paintings in turn inspired her song writing. This led to the album and exhibition NAKED MUSIC in 2016 and the exhibition Gimme Some Wine the following year, at which Eleanor McEvoy gave a live performance.
Since his untimely death in April 2017, critical acclaim is on-going and ever-increasing. Books and monographs continue to be published posthumously, featuring interviews/quotes (see publications), and public acquisitions and major museum exhibitions continue. In 2018, Romsey Abbey purchased and permanently installed his diptych St Ethelflaeda. This powerful and controversial diptych portrays the historic Grade 1 listed abbey’s tenth-century abbess, re-entering the abbey reading by the light of her hands.
In late 2019 a major three-month museum retrospective exhibition CHRIS GOLLON: Beyond the Horizon opened at Huddersfield Art Gallery, focusing on Gollon’s music-related works. This show included the UK premiere of a new film installation FIREWALL, a collaboration with the Sleaford Mods (see Exhibitions). In 2021, Eleanor McEvoy's new album 'Gimme Some Wine' will be released, the title track being the song she wrote that was both inspired by a Chris Gollon painting, and dediacted to him. On the cover will be the last painting Chris painted in response to the song.
Chris Gollon lived and worked in Surrey and IAP Fine Art exclusively holds his artistic estate, releasing only a select and limited number of works each year.
*David Tregunna, Director, IAP Fine Art, was a longstanding friend of the artist, as well as his gallery representative for over 25 years, and is the leading expert in his work worldwide. He is currently embarked on assisting the authors of a catalogue raisonné, and the makers of a new television documentary about the artist's life and work. More on this soon.....