Landscape artist David Anthony Hall (www.senezio.com) has teamed up with group of vendors and suppliers on a charitable work that will be premiered at his first West end solo exhibition (1st to 14th June 2009 as solo exhibition and from then until 31st June 2009 as a group show) at Thompson’s Gallery in Marylebone (www.thompsonsgallery.co.uk).
The centre-piece* of the exhibition, a 1.5 metre by 2.7 metre long ‘artist’s proof’ mounted in acrylic block, ‘Autumn Light’ (2008), is bathed in a golden ethereal glow. This, Hall’s largest work to date, hints at the direction in which David would like his work to develop in the future. ‘Autumn Light’ is dedicated in the memory of David's natural father, Antonio Senezio, who died of cancer in 2007. The proceeds from the sale of this piece will be donated to Cancer Research UK, Macmillan Cancer Support and East Wing St Bart’s Cancer ward.
David Anthony Hall (b. 1969) is an Irish artist based in London. Hall has been exhibited at top art fairs including London Art, Art London, 20/21 International Art fair and The Affordable Art Fairs, London, New York, Paris & Amsterdam. Recent group shows include: ‘Wonderland’, Will's Art Warehouse (2009), ‘English Landscape’ Iona House Gallery (2009) ‘The Photographic Exhibition’, Thompson’s Marylebone Gallery (2009) ‘Christmas Show’, SW1 Gallery (2008), Untitled Gallery (2008), ‘The Photographic Exhibition’, Thompson’s Marylebone Gallery (2008) and ‘AS I WALKED OUT ...’ Will's Art Warehouse, (2008)
Born in Dublin in 1969, David Anthony Hall’s first forays into photography occurred when his teacher encouraged his class to process and print old negatives. Printing up his father's it became apparent that he had the photography bug. After training as a graphic artist for two years he studied photography at the Dun Laoghaire School of Art and Design (now the Institute of Art). Working as a still life photographer, in 1994 he set up a commercial studio in West London, and successfully ran his own photographic agency Photohall.com Ltd from 1999 until 2006 when he decided to concentrate fulltime on his personal work.
David Anthony Hall is a landscape artist who uses a particular panoramic photographic technique to open up a wide space for his audience to explore. There is a suggestion of escapism as well as exploration in David’s work, as if he is creating a window for the viewer and inviting them to climb through. His enveloping vistas often lie somewhere between fantasy and reality; an artistic alchemist, David is able to transform the mundane into the magical and help us look and think about the world in a new way.
His committed and methodical approach to producing his photographs means that he often spends months on each image, revisiting a specific place in order to capture a particular light or atmosphere; he would rather wait another year to re-shoot a location than exhibit an image that he feels is unfinished.
Exhibited worldwide, including New York, Amsterdam, and Paris, David’s photographs are widely collected and sought after. Thompson’s Gallery are proud to present David Anthony Hall’s first major London solo exhibition.
All photographs in the show are archival prints mounted in acrylic block this technique achieves a floating, three dimensional quality unobtainable by any other process.
Hall has been supported in producing ‘Autumn Light’ by Canon UK (www.canon.co.uk) whose large format printer the work was produced upon, Velmex Distribution who printed the work, Drytac Europe Ltd (www.drytac.com) and Genesis Imaging Ltd (www.genesis-digital.net) who helped to produce the stunning finish.
Sitting in his immaculate West London office, home to his digital studio, David Anthony Hall is surrounded by the panoramic ‘proofs’ of his still ‘seascapes’, mesmeric ‘mountainscapes’ and tranquil ‘treescapes’. These works form the core of his first solo photographic exhibition, which runs from June 1st to 14th at Thompson’s Gallery on Marylebone’s bustling High Street.
Hall has spent the last twenty-one years working within the photographic industry. Finishing art school, he worked firstly as an assistant and then as a still-life photographer. Disillusioned with the commercial aspect of the industry, he set up an agency representing fellow photographers. Four years after turning his back on commissioned work, he took his first tentative steps on his current path.
Born in 1969 in a nursing home in Dublin, Hall is one of five children, four of whom were adopted. He says, “Growing up in a large family in Dublin's suburbs, we had mountains surrounding us and the sea just a couple of miles away. At home we spent most of our time outdoors. Summers holidays were spent in County Wicklow, caravanning and camping, swimming and fishing. Being adopted was all very normal in our home and we talked openly about it. Our parents encouraged us to explore any interest or talent we might have. They acquired a piano, putting my three older siblings through lessons to see if they were musical. Luckily for me the piano was removed before I was old enough to start.”
Aged thirteen, he found his ‘interest’ when a student teacher encouraged his class to process and print old negatives. “I printed up Dad’s. He was a particularly poor photographer. It became apparent to my parents that I had the ‘photography bug’. They bought me my first camera, a Fed IV, (Russian copy of a Leica) that same year.”
Following a two-year stint as a trainee graphic artist, David returned to the Dun Laoghaire School of Art and Design to study photography. Unable to pursue his career in Ireland, David arrived in London in June 1990. Firstly assisting advertising photographers he went on to set up a commercial studio in 1994 in West London shooting catalogues, corporate reports and advertisements for the press. Earning monthly what he had previously earned annually as an assistant, he paid the price by spending his days and nights in an artificially lit, blacked-out still-life studio. He admits, “Business was good. We moved three times, finally expanding into a 1,200 sq. ft studio and employing two staff. The work became less about photography and more about turning over huge commissions and chasing money.”
By the late 1990s, the digital revolution took its toll. “Digital was in its infancy, and at the time the quality was horrendous. I was almost forced to convert from film to digital by money-conscious clients. After losing a big contract (twelve weeks worth of studio work) to a digital photographer who under-quoted me by two thirds, I decided that the maths of converting over did not add up. I wound down the studio, sold the lights, gave away my cameras and vowed never to work ‘commissioned’ again.”
‘Retiring’ from commercial photography aged 31, David took what turned into a four-year sabbatical. He spent six months renovating his new home and learned to navigate the still-developing Internet. Spotting a gap in the market, he was the first person in the UK to set up an online photography agency. ‘Photohall.com’ zealously represented the rights of fifty professional photographers, offering advice, negotiating contract terms, renegotiating re-usage fees and where infringements occurred, asserting photographers rights. “I loved the process of photography, but I couldn't bring myself to work for clients whose primary concern was money and not talent. Through ‘photohall.com’ I was able to support my fellow photographers.”
What prompted David’s return to photography is unclear and he prefers not to discuss it. Perhaps it is enough to know that the opportunity to help others (combined with his reconciliation with his natural parents) went a long way towards healing past injustices, freeing him up to begin a new and calmer phase in his photographic career. This time around he enjoys the process of photography in the outdoors as much (if not more than) as the end result.
David works tirelessly on his large-scale panoramas producing around twelve finished pieces a year. He revisits locations over a period of months (or even years) as he waits for the elements; sun or moon, high tides, spring leaves to flower or autumn to peak. Meticulous to detail, he would rather wait another year to re-shoot a location than exhibit an image that he feels is half-finished.
His first panorama, ‘Bluebell Woodlands’ (2006), which sold out in March 2008, is a case in point. David has been visiting these woods for over five years, in May 2006, when the spring sun was high overhead, he captured a definitive set of images. “I feel one’s character is one’s destiny and applying a similar attitude; my work is my legacy. It is a deliberate approach that eliminates any immediate deadline and frees me up to spend as much time as I want at a location. Patience is key and I will wait for all the elements I consider necessary to collide.” He feels it is necessary to mention that as long as he is able, he will be taking pictures.
In 2007, his work was exhibited at Form Olympia, followed by the Photography Exhibition at Candid Arts Trust in Islington, where Ingrid Reynolds of Thompson’s Gallery ‘discovered’ him. Head Curator Judy Stafford explains, “We had considered putting on a fine art photographic exhibition. However, in order to achieve our objective we needed specialist expertise. This came when Ingrid joined us from Sotheby’s Photographic Department. On seeing David’s work, she was instantly excited and he was invited to exhibit in our first photographic exhibition last year.”
‘David is professional and committed to producing photography as fine art. The photographs appeal to our clients, who are generally used to buying paintings or sculpture from us. There is an intellectual level to his work that fascinates. Due to the success of the exhibition and continued demand for his work we were delighted to offer David his first London solo exhibition.’
The exhibition runs 1st – 14th June 2009, nineteen years after David first came to London to pursue a career in photography. While his streets may not have always been paved with gold, the centre-piece* of the exhibition, a 1.5 metre height by 2.7 metre length ‘artist’s proof’, ‘Autumn Light’ (2008), is bathed in a golden ethereal glow. This, his largest work to date, hints at the direction in which David would like his work to develop in the future.
“People have said that they feel like they are walking into my images, that they bring the outdoors inside. The ‘landscapes’ I photograph have been shaped over millennia. They have seen many generations come and go. I hope they will see many more, if only we humans can resist the urge to spoil it.”
Although unintentional, his first solo show marks his twenty-first year within the photographic industry as well as his fortieth birthday. “It has been an amazing journey, both personally and creatively. It’s been a winding road and although I have been side-tracked along the way, I finally feel I am at the point where I am using my time purposefully.”
Both nervous and overjoyed about the upcoming exhibition at Thompson’s, he says, “Professionally, it is a privilege to show in the West End. For the gallery to invest so much in me is an honour that recognises my hard work, creative ability and effort. Commercially, it is a statement of intent that I hope will allow me the budget to travel further afield for my next solo show. Personally, taken in the context of my life, this is exactly what I should be doing. It gives me a huge sense of accomplishment and fulfilment.”
*NB: ‘Autumn Light’ is dedicated in the memory of David's natural father, Antonio Senezio, who died of cancer in 2007. David spent three years (prior to his death) getting to know him and is in regular contact with his natural mother who is responding well to treatment for breast cancer. The proceeds from the sale of this piece will be donated to Cancer Research UK, Macmillan Cancer Support and East Wing St Bart’s Cancer ward.
DAVID ANTHONY HALL
Date of Birth: 18/01/1969
Place of Birth:
Thompsons Marylebone Gallery. Solo Show, 1st – 14th June 2009 76 Marylebone High Street, W1
English Landscape, June '09
Iona House Gallery, Woodstock, Oxford OX20 1TF
The Photographic Exhibition, June ‘09
Wonderland March ‘09
Will's Art Warehouse 180 Lower Richmond Road London SW15 1LY
Thompsons Marylebone Gallery, 76 Marylebone High Street London W1U 5JU
Christmas Show, December '08
SW1 Gallery, Cardinal Place, SW1 5JE
AS I WALKED OUT... June ‘08
Will's Art Warehouse, 180 Lower Richmond Road London SW15 1LY
The Photographic Exhibition, July ‘08
Thompsons Marylebone Gallery, 76 Marylebone High Street London W1U 5JU
AAF Amsterdam November ’09 Gashouder, Klönne plein 1, 1014 DD
Art London Chelsea. October ‘09 Royal Hospital, Chelsea, SW3
Affordable Art Fair Paris June ’09 Place de la Porte de Champerret
Affordable Art Fair New York May ’09 Metropolitan Pavilion, NYC
Bristol Affordable Art Fair May ‘09 Old Passenger Shed, Bristol
Glasgow Art Fair April ‘09 George Square, Glasgow
The Affordable Art Fair London Spring Collection. March ’09 London SW1
20|21 International Art Fair February ’09 Royal College of Art SW7
London Art, Islington. January ’09 Business Design Centre, N1
AAF Amsterdam November ’08 Klönne plein 1, 1014 DD
Art London Chelsea. October ‘08 Royal Hospital, Chelsea, SW3
Affordable Art Fair New York June ’08 Metropolitan Pavilion, NYC
Affordable Art Fair Paris May ’08 Place de la Porte de Champerret
Bristol Affordable Art Fair May ‘08 Bristol Temple Meads Station
The Affordable Art Fair London Spring Collection. March ’08 London SW1
Glasgow Art Fair March ‘08 George Square, Glasgow
Form exhibition in Olympia, March ’07 Olympia National Hall London W14
Battersea Contemporary Art Fair May ’07 Battersea Art Centre London
The Islington Contemporary Art & Design October ’07 Candid Arts Trust
Windsor Contemporary Art Fair November ’07 Royal Windsor Racecourse
Notes to Editor
Notes to Editor: For any further information or high resolution images please contact David on
Phone: +44 (0)20 8560 2188
Web site: http://www.senezio.com
Thompson’s Marylebone Gallery
76 Marylebone High Street
London W1U 5JU
Phone: +44(0)20 7935 3595
Web site: www.thompsonsgallery.co.uk
Contact: Ingrid Reynolds
Opening Times 10am - 6pm Monday-Friday,
11am - 4pm Weekends
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