Ian Cumberland is an Irish artist born in 1983. He studied fine art at University of Ulster, where he was awarded the John and Rachael Turner Award for the most outstanding student in their field. He graduated in 2006 with First Class Honours. Cumberland has gained a national and international reputation for his large-scale portraits. In 2010 he won the Davy Portrait Award, a major new arts prize that aims to celebrate contemporary portraiture in Ireland. In 2011 he was placed third overall in the prestigious BP Portrait Award. Earlier this year he won the Ireland-US Council and Irish Arts Review Portraiture Award at the Royal Hibernian Academy Annual Exhibition. Ian’s first major solo exhibition was at the Albemarle Gallery in 2008. His recent collection of paintings is an eclectic mix and a significant departure from earlier works. The artist says, I am interested in the painting process and try to produce work that is honest to both the medium and the subject, this results in work that has a more expressionistic quality, a raw use of the application of paint that is immediate and ‘gritty’ but does not always create a ‘pretty’ picture.
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