George Shaw Wall Art

George Shaw (Born 1966) has been a fan of the National Gallery all his life. Armed with just a sketchbook, he made regular day trips to Trafalgar Square from his home on a Coventry council estate in order to draw from or copy the works done by artists whom he found inspiring. His mother noticed his enthusiasm for the Old Masters and in response, in the early 1980s, she bought him an illustrated guide to the National Gallery as a birthday gift. He still uses it today. Shaw has been working from a studio in the National Gallery since 2014. From there, he’s had unrestricted and swift access to the Gallery, and he’s able to explore the collection at his leisure out of hours, observe the public, draw from the pictures, and find great inspiration in art for his own work.

Some of the earliest works Shaw made include a series of 14 portraits drawn in the various poses taken up by Christ in the “Stations of the Cross” compositions. Shaw is not known for working from the human figure, but these drawings were an important milestone on his way to making the art for an exhibition. He positioned them such that they were the first things visitors encountered on entering the Sunley Room, this in a way promoted his art. The artist is known for his highly detailed approach. His medium of choice is Humbrol enamel paints – usually used to paint model aeroplanes and trains. He says this medium gives his works an almost photographic, unique appearance.

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