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About the Artist Robert Oxley

Some contemporary artists go through something of a genre metamorphosis or fundamental shift at some point in their compositional evolution, whilst others experience something akin to a cathartic moment in their life and times which ultimately sees them going off at a different tangent. Essentially, that’s all part of the fascinating journey that those of a creative persuasion embark on, whether it’s pre-planned or (as is more likely the case) not. One such admired exponent of his (now, in more recent times) expressionistic wildlife genre, a certain best-selling number in the ever-swelling ranks going by the name of Robert Oxley has himself circumnavigated his artistic way around an unscheduled change of pictorial heart of late, seemingly moving away from his original photorealistic, natural history vibe paintings of animals in the wild (and which explored themes of both loss of natural habitat and potential species extinction) to a more pop surrealist mode. Which for the record, certainly isn’t a negative thing, and has subsequently witnessed an increase in interest in Oxley’s revised illustrative works as the metamorphosis has panned out.

Works By Robert Oxley

  • Churchill by Robert Oxley
  • You Wouldn't Like Me When I'm Angry by Robert Oxley
    You Wouldn't Like Me When I'm Angry
  • Madhavi by Robert Oxley
  • Robbie by Robert Oxley
  • Genghis by Robert Oxley
  • Harambe by Robert Oxley
  • Diplomat by Robert Oxley
  • Rathmanbore II by Robert Oxley
    Rathmanbore II
  • Arrasse by Robert Oxley
  • Blythe by Robert Oxley
  • Dedicate To Me by Robert Oxley
    Dedicate To Me
  • Eden by Robert Oxley
  • King For A Day by Robert Oxley
    King For A Day
  • Satsuma by Robert Oxley
  • The Inquisitors by Robert Oxley
    The Inquisitors
  • Virunga by Robert Oxley
  • Nebula by Robert Oxley
  • Manny by Robert Oxley
  • Last Exit by Robert Oxley
    Last Exit
  • Before I Forget by Robert Oxley
    Before I Forget
  • Aztec by Robert Oxley
  • Ozzie by Robert Oxley
  • Angus by Robert Oxley
  • Robert Oxley Sonic The Hedgehog Sega Portfolio by Robert Oxley
    Robert Oxley Sonic The Hedgehog Sega Portfolio
  • Sonic by Robert Oxley
  • Speed Of Sound by Robert Oxley
    Speed Of Sound
  • Speed Of Sound by Robert Oxley
    Speed Of Sound
  • Mancini by Robert Oxley
  • Maltese Blue by Robert Oxley
    Maltese Blue
  • Callisto by Robert Oxley
  • Braveheart by Robert Oxley
  • Obsidian by Robert Oxley

Describing having been inspired by the advent of more abstract, surrealist pieces in his chosen wildlife art discipline, Oxley was influenced enough to replot his existing graphic coordinates and charter an ambitious new course, and quickly set about immersing himself in pop surrealism and absorbing the signature works of artist pursuing this tack, including the likes of Robert Crumb, Glenn Brown and Robert Williams. With regards to the latter, Oxley explains that Williams routinely manifests what he refers to as a ‘psychedelic natural history’, and using this as his own illustrative bearings (and in Oxley’s own words); “I took a bunch of canvases and with no ideas no references and no vision of a finished painting I just painted and let it happen. As the paintings grew I realised that I wanted something that was loose and expressionistic, yet was controlled and detailed.” Oxley goes on to add; “Now 30 paintings in I have a whole new way of working and this has freed me up in many ways. It seems I am distorting images that I have spent years making as real as possible and it feels good.” Feel good it may be, yet capture the attention of the contemporary art-loving public at large it does by the bucketful, and has firmly put Oxley on the radar of seasoned critics, serious collectors and a loyal following/fan-base alike here and now.

Oxley’s personal story started many years earlier though, and effectively goes all the way back to his childhood and formative years, as is so often the case with today’s widely-regarded exponents of their artistic crafts. For as long as he can remember, Oxley has loved painting, and it wasn’t long before he realised that he had a natural flair for sketching, coupled with an ability to impress those who observed his early years creations. So much so that one of Oxley’s first drawings ended up being published in a book called ‘Getting Ready for School’; which was sent to nursery children all over the world. Which is one way of announcing your imminent arrival on the contemporary art scene, albeit a few years prematurely. As Oxley grew older, his work was influenced by his love of both horror movies and rock music, and he dedicated a significant amount of his spare time to drawing monsters and copying his favourite album covers. During the same, approximate passage of time, Oxley also developed a passion with a subject matter which stood at odds with the aforementioned interests, namely wildlife, birds and natural history topics; and began dreaming of one day being a zoo keeper. Oxley even went as far as to constructing and painting dioramas for imaginary zoos and aged 12-years he rose to a challenge set of him by his encouraging grandfather, which entailed sketching all the birds in an illustrated book of birds they both enjoyed looking at together. And as reward for his endeavours, Oxley was beside himself when he later discovered that, unbeknownst to him, his grandfather had arranged an exhibition of the compositional results of his challenge in the meantime.

From an educational viewpoint thereafter, Oxley admits he didn’t possess the required patience to go the distance with a more formal art training, and although he attempted an A-Level in Art whilst at school (and went on to study for a Degree as a mature student later in life), the critically acclaimed contemporary wildlife art practitioner says that he found both to be repetitive; and believed that his class tutors were no more advanced in their teaching methods/experience than he was himself at those particular junctures. As a result, Oxley is amongst that growing number of entirely self-taught artists and concludes; “Everything I know I taught myself from watching and doing, if I saw something I liked I’d try it myself and I never give up on a piece.” Preferring and going on to specialise in the professional frequenting of acrylic on canvas, Oxley’s habitual approach is centred on being ‘in the moment’, and moreover the act of making the work and giving himself over to the process and the chemistry which he has nurtured over the years. The theory behind each piece which Oxley wants to foster is that he wishes each individual study to appear as though it was created quickly and loosely, yet on closer scrutiny bears all the hallmarks of considered and meticulously-executed brushstrokes so as to underline the complex nature of the subject matter.

Today Oxley’s works are exhibited at galleries throughout the UK, as well as having appeared in various publications and having bagged a commendation from the esteemed BBC Wildlife Artist of the Year panel, before going on to being signed up by leading fine art publishing house, Washington Green most recently.

Latest Artworks

Framed Size: 30 x 40 inches

Framed Size: 48 x 32 inches

Framed Size: 36 x 36 inches