Alfons Bytautas RSA
Of Scottish/Lithuanian parentage, Alfons Bytautas was born in Selkirk in the Scottish Borders in 1955. His childhood years spent there gave him a love of nature and of the landscape in particular.
His talent for art was recognised at an early age and later, on the advice of his art teacher, the painter John McNairn, he applied to study at Edinburgh College of Art, beginning in the autumn of 1972.
While there he was introduced to the techniques of etching and lithography at the College's print department, marking the beginning of a life-long involvement with printmaking. Alfons was subsequently employed by Edinburgh Printmakers, as Senior Etching Technician, before leaving in 2009 after having worked there for thirty years. As a master-printer, he worked on projects with many artists, including Alan Davie, Callum Innes, John Bellany and Barbara Rae.
In 1994 Alfons was elected an Associate Member of the Royal Scottish Academy, becoming an Academician in 2006. He moved from Edinburgh in 2009 to live in Newcastle upon Tyne, where he works for Northumbria University.
His recent work is created using imagination and the power of the unconscious to transform observations and memories. These works can be placed stylistically somewhere between abstraction and figuration, attempting to redefine our notions of “reality” in art. Alfons has stated that his aim is not to copy nature but to represent it as transformed by imagination, using methods similar to that of automatic drawing to instigate and guide the process. Alfons Bytautas’ artworks reflect his interest in the uncanny and the fantastical but are based on an acute awareness of the natural world in its many and varied forms.
Exhibitions at Gallagher & Turner:
13 July - 10 September 2016