Artist of note: Guy Haddon Grant

Artist of note: Guy Haddon Grant

Guy Haddon Grant is an artist of rare ability to sculpt, draw, paint or weld. His works are united by the monochromatic palette and precise fluidity with which he uses media, from plaster or wood to charcoal or smoke...

Guy’s Camberwell-based studio is a forest of totemic sculptures, with the faces of myriad subjects looking down from shelves. His evident technical skills and talent enable him to switch effortlessly from the figurative to the abstract, drawing inspiration from everything from faces to materials to nature’s debris.

His show Mind’s Eye is currently on show at Pi Artworks, London, so we asked him to invite us into his studio and share what makes him tick...

Where do you seek inspiration?

Everywhere. Exhibitions, museums, walking, reading, daydreaming… There might be passages in a painting I’ve seen that I need to respond to or the memory of a sensation I wanted to describe.

I’ve spent the past few months drawing from a collection of vertebrae I have in the studio. They are such perfect sculptural forms, wonderful to study. While doing so you realise the forms suggest so many other things and you are taken on a journey.

What do you hope your work can give people?

I’d hope a similar sensation to my experience of making it. Often it’s an emotional response to something that kick starts the work. By the end, if I'm successful, enough of that initial response will be present in the work to be felt and, if I'm lucky, it’s magnified and undeniable.

It may be that I'm enjoying the possible readings that an object presents, playing with the visual ambiguity. The bone studies while clearly being studies of what they are – are at the same time sea creatures or fungi, masks or maps.

What’s been the most valuable lesson making artwork has taught you?

That looking and seeing are muscles that need to be exercised.

What’s the best thing about being an artist?

All the possibilities

And the worst…?

All the possibilities

What does home mean to you?


Where would we find you during the late afternoon?

You’d likely find me in my studio, on my fourth cafetière of the day, trying to work out if what I have just worked on succeeded or whether the whole thing needs scrapping and starting again… But on a good day, I’d be on cloud nine, feeling like what I’ve made is just right, assured of my brilliance and on the way to have a drink nearby with friends…

Guy Haddon Grant: Mind’s Eye is showing at Pi Artworks until Sat 14th Aug.