Colin McMaster
Colin McMaster was born in Belfast in 1977. He studied at Central St. Martins, London where he continues to work and live. After being awarded the Royal Ulster Academy Student Prize, he has shown at art fairs and exhibitions in Glasgow, New York, Miami, London, and has had solo shows in Dublin and Belfast. Outside the gallery setting, Colin has shown work in Heal’s Department Store, Selfridges window display, and paintings auctioned as part of the English National Ballet Ball. Pieces are held in the collections of BDO Hayward, Lacuna Developments and the Merchant Hotel.
Stylistically, the work owes much to the Pop Art movement. The artist paints stereotypes rather than individuals, meshing references from romantic comics and their heightened sense of melodrama, with the more sinister undertones of American film noir and pulp crime novels. The subjects are superficially attractive but there is an underlying sense of their narcissism and perhaps even their engagement in acts which the viewer is compelled to interpret as illicit. As a result, the viewer is cast as a voyeur, the perception of what’s taking place in the paintings suspended in a double take, in an ambivalence between observation and accusation.
The smoothness of the picture surface and the mannequin-like quality of the figures heightens the feeling of artifice and blurs our sense of looking at a painted image.