"The language I use to communicate my ideas is through the process of oil paint on canvas. 

I would say that every work of art, although perhaps very similar in approach or inspiration, has a unique set of problems which have to be resolved.  It is through the use of my own personal language of marks, gestures and surface that I use to explain my preoccupations and themes." - John Monks

John Monks studied at Liverpool School of Art and the RCA between 1977-80 and has since assumed the status of one of Britain’s most significant figurative painters. His archetypal subject matter revolves around architectural spaces. He fragments the traditional tropes of form and reconstructs them through rays of light that fracture in his interiors. Monks' paintings encompass the binaries of past and present, light and dark, decadence and dilapidation. The paintings become portraits of abandoned rooms filled with whispers of the past. Sharing his time between his London studio and his studio in France – both formerly abandoned and steeped in history  - John Monks continues to embark on paintings of monumental interiors.

"The artists I most admire, Velazquez, Goya, Manet, Bacon among others, all acknowledge this dialogue between the reality of the material and the allusion it attempts to create." - John Monks


Born in 1954 in Manchester John Monks studied at Liverpool School of Art and the RCA, 1977 - 80.  He was represented by Peter Findlay Gallery in New York.  His work is in the collections of: The Metropolitan Museum, Yale Centre for British Art, CAS, Arts Council of Great Britain, The V&A, Manchester City Art Galleries and Santa Barbara Museum, California. In 2013 Monks had a solo exhibition at The Barber Institute of Fine Arts in Birmingham. His work is currently included in the group exhibition Public View, which runs until 23 April 2017 at the Bluecoat Gallery, Liverpool. John Monks has been exhibiting with Long & Ryle since 2002.


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