In 1928, Christopher ‘Kit’ Wood and Ben Nicholson, two dedicated and established modernist painters visited Cornwall, and on their last day there, travelled to St Ives where they found an old retired fisherman who spent his days painting his memories and observations on to bits of board using household paints. He didn’t offer any explanation for his style, he hadn’t had any formal training and he had never considered any of the ‘rules’ associated with art, that of perspective, tone or composition. The old man simply painted the images he held inside himself on to whatever he could find. His name was Alfred Wallis and this website is dedicated to his memory.
Alfred Wallis. Child like. Yes. Naive. And fun to look at. Is that good enough to be considered art. There are many accomplished draftsman who are not artists. There is something lacking in their work. Wallis has it. Life. The moment. And even in some of the details he knows what he is depicting. As an artist he has been romanticized quite a bit. And I think the idea of discovering some unknown uneducated genius is a romantic dream of some collectors. I’m beginning to sound too cynical. Check out his work.