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Peebeesongs - Hicks Gallery Wimbledon

Preview by Lizzie Guilfoyle

ANDREA Byrne’s solo show Peebeesongs, a collection of unique flower paintings, is on display at Hicks Gallery Wimbledon until March 1, 2009.

Byrne has been regarded as one of the most original talents to emerge on the London art scene in recent years. Jeff Hicks, owner of Hicks Gallery Wimbledon has been talking about the artist and the gallery:

“Andrea Byrne first came to us early in 2001, though I cannot claim any credit for this as she was actually spotted by the keen eye of my wife Ann. “I have found this incredibly exciting artist and I think we should show her work as soon as possible”. A week later everything we had taken was sold, and so it has continued until the present day.

Andrea was born in Islington in 1962, moving to Lancashire at the age of seven. She initially completed an art foundation course before moving on to John Moores University, Liverpool where she gained a degree in Fashion/Textiles 1981 -84. Whilst studying for her degree she was a finalist in the 19 magazine “Young Designer of the Year”, and was one of the young fashion designers chosen for the Olympia Student Fashion stand.

She moved back to London in 1986 and went on to pursue an internationally successful career in fashion illustration, working for many leading advertising agencies, magazines and design groups, ranging in diversity from Vogue, Saatchi & Saatchi to the Natural History Museum. Early in her career Andrea was a presence in many London Art Schools lecturing on life drawing, fashion and printed textiles. In 1988 Andrea was awarded the highly acclaimed “Guardian Illustration Award”, representing and illustrating for the publication during Japanese Fashion Week in Tokyo. In April 2000 her large-scale nudes were featured in an article in Vogue magazine.

In 2000 painting became her focus, initially with large-scale nudes, then with representations of flowers. Originally her work was an extension of her involvement within contemporary fashion movements, whilst retaining her individual stylistic approach.

She completed a series of important commissions for Aquascutum for their Spring 2003 international press campaign, which were on view at their London Regent Street store. She has also been the subject of an extensive and extremely complimentary article in Designweek.

Andrea has been with Hicks Gallery since the beginning of 2001 and has been our best selling artist during that time. A large selection of her work was featured in a sell-out one woman show at the gallery in April 2002 and was also sold out at the March 2002, 2003 and 2004 Affordable Art Fairs. A further sell-out solo show was held in November 2003.

In September 2004 she decided to study for her MA at St. Martins School of Art, where her work moved into installation as well as painting. Examples of her figurative work are currently on display in the “On Time” exhibition as part of the East Wing collection at the Courtauld Gallery. She returned to full time painting in 2007 and had another sell-out show with us. In 2007 Andrea started an M.A. at Goldsmiths College in aural and visual culture.”

A percentage of the proceeds from this exhibition will be donated to the East Lancs Hospice.

Opening times: Thursdays to Saturdays from 10am to 6pm, Sundays from 1.30pm to 5pm.

Hicks Gallery, 2 Leopold Road, Wimbledon, SW19 7BD