Nov 10-22 2014 GALLERY 8 Nigel Cox - Open a 'pdf' of this press release - return to Galleries PR Index


Presented by Coates and Scarry, at Gallery 8, Duke Street, London

Opens 10 November 2014

Nigel Coxs minimalistic oil paintings capture an extraordinary realism. Oblivious references the subjects,

and our own, frequent obliviousness to the world around us.

Cox is inspired by ordinary people going about their everyday lives and the disassociation from their envi-

ronment by immersion in routine. He captures their moments unawares.

Cox often paints his figures from a viewpoint where no face is visible and portrays them against a vague,

vast, empty landscape. A deliberate move, designed to focus the full attention on the figure. The figures are

solitary, confident and calm. They have an inner peace and strength and are at one with their surroundings.

The paintings reflect solitude, tranquillity and confidence, giving every day scenes an unexpected and surreal

feeling while keeping them solidly within the real world.

The artist’s love of large open spaces and lack of clutter is obvious as is his fascination by detail. He’s

coined the phrase Photorealistic Minimalism to describe his work. His paintings provide the viewer with a

glimpse beyond the clutter of everyday life, conjuring up notions of escape and peace, offering sanctuary

from the frenetic world outside.

Cox’s background included a period of time working as a radio officer on ships, and a lucky break came

when he was offered a place on Sir Ranulph Fiennes Transglobe Expedition - the first circumnavigation of

the globe along the Greenwich Meridian via land, sea and ice. He was later commissioned to paint the first

and, so far, only portrait of Sir Ranulph. Cox is also known for his incredible portrait of dance legend Carlos


Coates and Scarry and Cox will also host a charity private view to benefit the Terrence Higgins Trust on

Thursday 20 November from 1800 until 2100. A limited edition of two specially selected prints will be re-

leased on the night, with all proceeds going to the Trust.

Cox paints primarily in oil on linen, building up thin layers of precise paint, developing depth and detail, and

bringing an important warmth to the work. The resulting paintings are smooth to the touch and glow with a

subtle inner light and life.

The artist says of one seminal moment in the development of his work:

While travelling through Liverpool Street Station on a sunny day in 2004 I noticed a girl sitting on a seat in

the concourse reading a book. I sat down on the floor against a pillar and photographed her, amazed that no

one else noticed how wonderful she looked. For her, the Station no longer existed. She was immersed in her

book and was oblivious to everything around her. She had, unwittingly, removed herself from this place,

transporting herself elsewhere. I was captivated by how special people can be when removed from the crowd

and how wonderful it is to observe them, alone, in this state.

This idea developed in Coxs mind and formulated his signature style.

The show also introduces a new element in Cox’s work. He has begun developing the backgrounds, intro-

ducing vague, grey fog so prevalent in his early work, to show scenes of modern political turmoil - soldiers,

military helicopters emphasizing our common obliviousness to the modern world around us despite being

more connected than ever through the internet and social media.

Oblivious - Open from Monday 10th November 2014 until Saturday 22nd November 2014, 1100 until

1900 everyday, at Gallery 8, 8 Duke Street, St James's, London SW1Y 6BN.

Viewing also by private appointment - please call Richard Scarry on 07540 793 264.

Press please contact Abigail Stuart-Menteth, Damson PR, t: 078 555 26 550 or e:

Notes to editors:

1. Press and private preview on Wednesday 12th November 6.00-9.30pm please RSVP to

2. Coates and Scarry and Nigel will also host a charity private view to benefit the Terence Higgins Trust

on Thursday 20 November from 1800 until 2100. A limited edition of two specially selected prints will

be released on the night, with all proceeds going to the Trust.

3. Dr Rosemary Gillespie, Chief Executive at Terrence Higgins Trust, said: We’re thrilled that Coates

and Scarry and Nigel Cox have chosen our charity to benefit from this show. The art world has a long hi-

story of championing HIV as a cause, and it is great to see this support continuing today. The funds

raised through sales of these exceptional prints will help people living with and affected by HIV and se-

xual ill health.

4. The Terrence Higgins Trust is the UKs largest HIV and sexual health charity with centres across Eng-

land, Scotland and Wales. The Trust provides information and advice about HIV and sexual health

and offers a range of services including sexual health checks, counselling and support


5. Coates and Scarry curate and exhibit internationally groundbreaking shows. Recent exhibitions include

Unnatural-Natural History at the Royal West of England Academy in 2012 and Trailblazers at Above

Second, Hong Kong in 2013.

OBLIVIOUS II | 36” x 60 | Oil on linen

Oblivious II depicts a girl shopping and messaging friends. She is totally involved in the here and now . .

.and oblivious to what is happening around her but also to whats happening around the world while she goes

about her very normal life.

The Striding Shadow | 48” x 48 | Oil on linen

A girl striding towards her destination. Viewed from above showing us an extreme perspective of the girl

that is less familiar to us . . . this is accentuated by her shadow that reflects a more familiar profile.

Heisenberg’s Apprentice | 36” x 30 | Oil on linen

A young shopper walking down the street in busy London. Removing him from his surroundings gives the

figure a positive and confident feeling. Changing the logo on the bag, from a department store branded bag

to the Golden Moth Chemicals logo from hit TV series Breaking Bad gives an edge to the painting for

those in the know. The title references the TV series also.