Line'em Up Boys
There is something very comforting and almost cosy about Malcolm Teasdale’s brand of contemporary landscapes, which inevitable warms your cockles on a cold winter’s night like a massive duvet and a roaring, open fire, as you look out upon vistas and panoramas which fill you with cheer and makes your head nod in acknowledgement of this virtually familiar scene. More so if you actually hail from the glorious North East of England, and Northumbria in particular; and perhaps if you’re of the slightly more mature generation, let’s say. But before we ramble on too much, let’s introduce the uninitiated as to the illustrative prowess and standing of the much celebrated fine artist and professional Geordie, Teasdale.
Born in 1944 in the Elswick district of Newcastle-upon-Tyne, Teasdale was raised in the Westerhope area of the famous city and has over the best part of four decades of painting, effortlessly captured the very essence and proud, working class heritage and pedigree of this once heavily industrious region with steely visual aplomb. Brought up with an innate understanding and respect for the hard working ethic of this area of the North East and its indigenous people, Teasdale has successfully cemented what he knows and understands (and was privy to) best, and celebrated the industry, enterprise and overwhelming sense of community spirit which had always embraced the region in his own inimitably graphic way.
From pit, shipyard, glass and steel workers setting out at the crack of dawn or dead of night to embark on yet another thankless shift, to the very same men and boys congregating outside the shine to football that is to native Geordies, St James’ Park – the home to their beloved Newcastle United FC. Teasdale has compositionally summed up the lot, and has elsewhere compiled thought-provoking, enlightening, insight-offering portraits of the men of steel, coal, glass and ships enjoying bank holiday away days to the coast with their families, the hustle and bustle of Bigg Market on any given day and Newcastle’s Central Station caught under the glare of both natural and superficial lighting.
Favouring the use of gouache, applied freely and viscerally with the aid and abetting of a subtle watercolour wash, only then to be further amended by the subjectivity of heavy overlays of concentrated paint in a similar vein to that of oils, Teasdale paints from a selective palette of raw, earthy hues and saturations from the outset of each envisaged piece, and until fairly recently has been collaborating with a fine art publisher who ensured that the fine artist’s individual pieces and collective works to date were distributed widely throughout the UK, as well as America.
Old industrial scenes, colliery towns and villages and considered representations of the social life and very fabric of workers in the North East during the1940's and 50's are historically what Teasdale and his painted life and times are all about. If you look closely you’ll maybe concur that there’s an almost Impressionist style flaunted, as he strives to concentrate on the physical and emotional mood and atmosphere struck at that moment. And then there’s Teasdale’s demanding attention to all detailing, as the artist is known for his near obsessive compulsive need to create each canvas with some degree of historical accuracy by adopting archival material to tell the illustrative tale as if it were taking place here and now. So the eagle-eyed will observe that that bus, poster, cigarette packet and football strip are truly authentic of that era. More than that though, each and every Teasdale pictorial offering retains a sincerity and humour to accompany the nostalgia, which arise from Teasdale's own personal memories and underlying passion for the past.
Of late Teasdale has been instrumental in the launch of the very first Newcastle/Gateshead Art Fair for the event's sponsor (HSBC), whilst he’s also provided a solo exhibition for the opening of the Whitewall Gallery in the city’s Grey Street. What’s more Teasdale has featured as one of the principal artists showcasing his works at Newcastle’s Biscuit Factory and was invited to be their main artist in winter, 2012. Meanwhile Teasdale enjoyed a series of exhibitions showing during 2011 in Bath and paintings in several other galleries in the Midlands, while later that year a leading London gallery hosted his paintings in Chelsea, the Royal College of Art and the Affordable Art Fair.
bio / view all
Edition Copies: 195
WxH: 18 x 13 inches