Basil Blackshaw

Caught a BBC documentary on Iplayer about him. I assumed he had died, but apparently not. Interviews with him show him as an old man in rather desperate need of a haircut.

His work is varied and sometimes highly impressive. He is a country artist/man, with many pictures of the dogs and horses he has been surrounded with in Northern Ireland. But that sounds too limiting; he has become more adventurous as he has got older. The show featured for example a series of works of windows, which a number of the commentators liked.

It is always good for the English audience to get a glimpse of the artistic riches which have come out of NI. Blackshaw is but the latest of a long line of significant 20th C painters and sculptors, such as Gerard Dillon, George Campbell, FE McWilliam,  Arthur Armstrong, Colin Middleton, Daniel O’Neil, Norah McGuinness, Sine Mackinnon and so on. One could even include Wiliam Scott, whose family came from Enniskillen, where the painter returned to from Scotland as a boy.