Born 1950 – Johannesburg, South Africa
After completing his standard education, Gavin followed a course in Graphic Design at the Johannesburg College of Art. This he perceived as his chosen career following on his ability to draw and copy the etchings of old masters, particularly Rembrandt. He soon found the work “bitty” and the commercial world’s demands of a graphic designer certainly did not satisfy the emergent artist within him.
In Cape Town he enrolled in classes at the Ruth Prowse Art School and joined the Artists Co-operative under the direction of Ryno Swart. Gavin has been painting full time since 1995.
Gavin writes, “My early exposure to Rembrandt etchings inspired me to make detailed copies in pen and ink. Besides Rembrandt, I draw my inspiration from John Singer Sergeant, the Pre-Raphaelites, Inges, Degas, the impressionists and Walter Sichert – of the contemporary Artists I look to Uglow, Andrew Wyeth and Skip Lipke”
Further to this, the admiration of the work of American artist Robert Schmidt and English artist Ken Howard have influenced his style. The inspiration of South African artist Ryno Swart is clearly visible.
Various shows in South African galleries since 1997 resulted in exhibitions in London and an invitation to submit work to the Royal Academy Summer Exhibition. Although rejected at this first attempt, it did open the way for many commissions and invitation to show in Geneva, Switzerland.