GILES WHITEHEAD WAS BORN IN KENT AND GREW UP ON A FARM IN TENTERDEN.
The farm and countryside have always had a strong influence on his work. As a child, Giles spent many hours watching his father – who was a farmer, musician and craftsman – making objects out of wood or turning table legs and spoons on an old Victorian lathe. These experiences initiated Giles’ passion for working with wood. Giles’ interest in art continued through school and to further education when he studied at The Kent Institute of Art and Design. His work focuses on paintings of places and wood sculptures that explore the quirky aspects of life.
‘My images come from observations, memories and imagination. I want to create a sense of place, a moment in time, a small, visual story that has clarity, but also areas for interpretation. I often work from rough sketches using acrylic paint on textured wooden surfaces, responding intuitively and allowing images to reveal themselves.’
Giles prefers the subtlety of small interactions over the dramatic ¬- he might emphasise the drama of buildings with steep angles, but then grace them with the occasional small event like a cat treading in a wet clay roof tile. He focuses on a theme, beginning with a time and place, using a distinctive palette. These colours may come from a distilled memory of a place, such as red ochre brickwork or green copper Verdigris. His art aims to give a sense of heritage and history, his exhibitions having the feel of a local museum crowded with paintings and artifacts, making a curious and evocative space to explore.
Giles works as a full-time artist and exhibits his work across the South East