PAINTINGS went up in smoke as a Horsham artist burned more than 40 of his artworks in an attempt to create a new masterpiece last week (Thursday April 19) in Partridge Green.
William Bill Hudson, 69, who has been painting since he was eight, made it clear that this was not a stunt and he intended to make a new creation from the ashes.
He said that he was captivated by the colour and the movement of the flames, which reminded him of gazing into his parent’s fire as a child.
Bill added: “It’s disheartening but it’s a transition. They all mean something but when you think about it and you say you are doing something, as an artist you have to do it.”
He described the process as heart wrenching, but added he had overcome that over two night and was truly excited to get working on the new piece.
Most of the burned paintings dated from the 1970s and 1980s, and by destroying it Bill believes he can capture some of it back from the ashes in an artistic rebirth.
He first had the idea while studying at the Norwich school of art in 1986, but was persuaded to scrap the idea by a tutor.
His abstract work, which has been named ‘Immediacy’ is currently on display at the appointment-only Lovat Barnes Gallery in London.
“It’s a strange feeling but some of these paintings have been wrapped up and I have never seen them for years,” he added.
“I’m into time and the fourth dimension. Physicians and scientists see four dimensions but the artist can see it too.
“That’s the metamorphosis, creating something out of the old and making something new.”
Vernon Holt, Bill’s agent, said that Bill could not move on artistically without destroying the artwork.
“He’s interested to try something different and he’s pushing the boundaries.
“If people want to call Bill a raving lunatic then that’s OK, because he’s not,” he added.
“He’s doing something that has not been done before, it has been done in anger or hate but never like this.”
Born and raised in East Anglia, his artistic talent was first noticed by his parents at eight when they saw him drawing in the dust on their homes’ window sills.
He now lives in the Horsham area to be closer to his daughter and grandchildren.
For more information visit the gallery’s website.