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Justin Prigmore

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The art of Justin Prigmore takes us on a journey to other continents and brings the plains of the Serengeti (and other African vistas) and various North American horizons right into our living rooms (or whatever other rooms you so choose to hang art work from) and smack, bang onto our walls. With illustrative shades of watching a David Attenborough documentary every time we settle our gaze on to his magnanimous compositions, Prigmore’s epic portrayals of such wondrous creatures native of these wild habitats, comprising anything from elephants and lions to Cheetahs and Leopards. But then Prigmore’s landscapes – and therein the exotic subject matter which are native to it – are not just restricted (for want of a better word) to the African continent, as much of his signature compositional work is inspired from vistas and their typical occupants here in the UK. Or rather, Scotland. Home to herds of roaming deer, partridge, ospreys and grouse.

Born in Wales in 1974, Prigmore has since made his home in Carrbridge in Scotland, where he settled down with his wife and family and in which environs he’s constantly motivated by what’s found not far from his own doorstep. Gaining a Masters Degree in Ecology, Prigmore is currently employed on a part-time basis as a Nature Officer by the Cairngorms National Park Authority, with a remit of overseeing the travails of the Ranger Services. Speaking of his locality and the influence which it has on his art, Prigmore points out; “I've travelled a lot looking for inspiration. But now I'm finding all the inspiration I could want just around my home in the Cairngorms National Park,” adding, “I want to soak it up and become the best I can painting what's on my doorstep. I'm living these latest paintings on a daily basis and it just feels right”.

Prigmore is constantly striving to capture a special juncture in the nucleus of his paintings, yet maintaining ecologically-sound principles at all times. As an artist he admits that he’s drawn to painters who can commit to canvas without every minute detail, irrespective of subject matter, and insists that with each new composition he embarks on he sees it as a further walk in that new direction of where he wants to ultimately find himself and his work.

Extensively travelled – with his wife often in tow – it was whilst globe-trotting that he first discovered a penchant for painting wildlife, and it was the sights, sounds, colours and shapes indicative of Colorado specifically which whet his artistic appetite enough for him to look into this as a new career frontier to explore. Touring the art galleries dotted around The Rockies, and in particular recalling the images that met him at the National Museum of Wildlife Art, situated in Jackson Hole, Prigmore was bitten by the visual documenting bug so to speak, right then and there. North America made way for Western Canada and Alaska, as Prigmore expanded his artistic horizons further, including discovering various parts of previously un-chartered (for him) Europe as well as a year spent living in Northern Sweden; all the time searching for inspirations to establish his art which he was then developing, nurturing and naturally evolving.

Discovering Africa for the first time in 2006, Prigmore had his eyes well and truly opened by the wildlife spectacles he was privy to in both Kenya and Tanzania, while most recently he’s returned to North America to witness the USP’s that Grand Teton and the famous Yellowstone National Parks have to offer. During the latter expedition, Prigmore was fortunate enough to team up with wolf researchers who were in the throes of radio-tracking wild wolves which were known to be active within the northern range of Yellowstone.

Prigmore showcases his grandiose compositions here in the UK and internationally, with his individual studies and collections often forming part of events and/or gaining high profile wall space in a host of art galleries in a solo artist context. On the other side of the Atlantic, Prigmore’s stock has well and truly risen in recent years, securing and growing a richly deserved reputation for his wildlife art-originating gift. The Bennington Center for the Arts in Vermont for example snapped up a triumvirate of his pieces to furnish their own permanent collection with, while elsewhere the Society of Animal Artists elected Prigmore as a signature member. Meanwhile the celebrated wildlife artist’s, "The Standoff" has been purchased for the permanent collection of the Wildlife Experience Museum in Denver, Colorado. In Europe too, Prigmore has received critical acclaim for his work, most notably in Holland and here in the UK where he’s achieved regular successes at the annual National Exhibition of Wildlife Art, held each year on The Wirral in the North of England. Titles here have included the following; ‘Best British Wildlife’ and ‘Birdwatch Artist of the Year’ awards, alongside of being selected as the winner of ‘Wildscape, Artist of the Year, Editor’s Selection’.