David Clapham is a contemporary British Artist whose career has spanned a wide range of entrepreneurial and creative output including 10 years working in corporate and broadcast media as a documentary film maker. In 1976 he co-founded the Bridewell studios complex in Liverpool which helped to launch the careers of artists such as Ian McKeever and Anish Kapoor. The range and scope of his involvement in the media and Fine Arts is impressive as his intellectual curiosity makes him always ready to explore new ideas. It was Clapham who, whilst lecturing at Liverpool Poly, invited Yoko Ono to perform her famous ‘happening’ at the Bluecoat Chambers 1967.
His career has taken him to diverse and sometimes dangerous places in the world and the search for a safe place and an edge of uncertainty permeate his images on canvas to this day.
As well as his North Yorkshire background Clapham has recently discovered an Eastern European heritage and a revisionist interest in modern history, particularly the period of widely felt anxiety during the Second World War. A recurring concern is inherited memory, he does not look at nature to represent what we all see. It is looking through the lens of history and recollection that sets in motion a series of memories, of a moment in time, a passage of a particular day, a particular colour, with its inherent memories that represent a true reality
Clapham has had a studio in Central Portugal for the last 12 years and now lives between there and central London. His recent work combines collage, acrylic paint and photo reproduction through a complex and lengthy process of scaling and resizing the image until it reaches a state of emotional familiarity that can be called completion. His working process is a series of re-statements of an underlying emotion, seen through the allegory and mysticism of nature, triggered by the unique quality of the Portuguese landscape. His large canvases are supported by small works created as part of the development of the final painting