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Stephen Appleby-Barr Biography

Stephen Appleby-Barr’s paintings juxtapose fantastical and everyday objects, conjuring a dreamlike world which verges on the uncanny. His sensitive and masterly use of the traditional medium of oil paint contrasts with his modern sensibility. Appleby-Barr sees his art as storytelling, and tours museums and city streets in the search for characters and sets to introduce into his otherworldly universe. He often constructs intricate miniature sculptures and maquettes in preparation for his paintings, perfecting the scale of his set pieces before recreating them on canvas.

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In a series of new works created in 2020, Appleby-Barr’s characters are situated in dark, intimate spaces, illuminated from above by a strong light which catches on the reflective surfaces of glasses and bottles, and the pearls which he has scattered across tables, pedestals, and wooden blocks. Cloves of garlic, shells, teacups, and a host of other eclectic objects hint at symbolism without overtly revealing their secrets.

Born in 1981 in Toronto, Stephen Appleby-Barr is currently based in London, England. His work has been exhibited and collected in Canada, the United States and Europe.

Text courtesy Robilant+Voena.

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Robilant+Voena contemporary art gallery in London, United Kingdom
Robilant+Voena London, New York, Paris, Milan
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