Feature: THE BIG PICTURE - Paul Bloomer - Facing the Sea at the Boundary Gallery

Published: 15 April 2010

BORN in the Black Country, Paul Bloomer left school at 15 without ambition and ended up working in the same factory as his mother. Four years later, he discovered a love of drawing and colour in particular.

So he bravely went against his family’s wishes, enrolled on an arts course and, through sheer determination, ended up with a BA from Nottingham Poly. Then, amazingly, he went to the Royal Academy Schools and won a postgraduate diploma in 1994, plus the prize as the most outstanding student.

Now you can see the results of all that effort in his recent works, which are on show at the Boundary Gallery in Swiss Cottage. And they are a revelation. That’s because Paul has spent the past 13 years living in the Shetland Islands where  the sea and the special northern light has dominated his life and much of his work. The current show is made up of dramatic seascapes. “The sea shapes island life, forming a natural barrier that offers protection and harvest but brings with it isolation that forges unique identity and a strong community,” explains Paul, now 43.

“My art became a confrontation with nature in a painterly battle between the secular and the sacred, and between the colours of light and the colours of dark.” 

He now sees that his work is not only facing the sea head on but also his own life, all on an island where there is nowhere else to go.

Paul Bloomer Facing the Sea is at the Boundary Gallery, 90 Boundary Road, NW8, until April 24. Wednesday to Saturday 
11am-6pm, 0207 624 1126
, www.boundarygallery.com



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