Robert Mountjoy was born in Devon and attended Bideford Grammar
School. He trained to be an Art Teacher in Cheltenham and read for
a degree at Bristol. He started teaching in 1972.
He describes his work as 'contemporary watercolours'. Painting on
stretched paper which has been primed with gesso, he uses multiple
layers of watercolour and acrylic to create small paintings that are
intimate, intricate and often closely detailed. Paintings are
worked and reworked over a number of months, sometimes years.
The consequence of this approach is that only a small number of
paintings are deemed 'finished' and released each year. 'Composition
is everything' is his maxim and although he turned away from abstraction
in the 1980s, forms are arranged and space is organised to a measured plan.
Tin of Pears, Watercolour on Gesso
Subjects for paintings are drawn from personal involvement and follow phases or themes.
There was a period when landscape dominated followed by a time when he was investigating
corners of rural neglect. In recent years he has been working with still life groups,
carefully arranging a few key objects in beams of strong light.
Life drawing has been a constant throughout his life as an artist and running
parallel to the still life work he has been working on a series of very personal
portraits. While a few of these have been shown individually he sees the whole
collection as one piece, and is intent on holding them back to show as such.
Robert Mountjoy has exhibited at the RWA most years since 1979, winning the MM
International Prize in 2002. He has exhibited with the SWAc since its beginning,
becoming an Academician in 2003. He was short listed for the Lynn Painter-Stainer
Prize in 2005 and his last one-man show was at Beaux Arts, Bath in 2006.
Opposite is a short film documenting in detail the making of Three Apricots in a Rimmed Bowl.
See below for a larger sized image of the painting.
Making Three Apricots in a Rimmed Bowl
Pear and Lace Tablecloth Watercolour on Gesso
Tin of Pears Watercolour on Gesso
Red Perry Watercolour on Gesso
Bowl Of Cherries Watercolour on Gesso
Organic Plum Watercolour on Gesso
The Last Plum Watercolour on Gesso
Three Apricots in a Rimmed Bowl Watercolour on Gesso
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