Bernard Heslin




Seeing Voices

The figures inhabiting my paintings are not so much actual portraits as participants in the recurring events and patterns of history, involving us all in the same human experiences, hopes and despairs. Or from their own, perhaps far off, time they are simply marking their presence as part of a collective memory.


It is our own experiences bring them to life and these experiences are, in their turn, are enlivened by them. As we resonate with their lives and being, it is as if they reach out to us through the universal language of painting and we are connected by a common language.


The works shown here  start from 2012 after my move from London. 


Born in 1947 in Barrow in Furness I spent some time in the shipyard. Later I studied painting at Christ’s College of Education Liverpool and, after moving to London, attended  courses at St Martin’s School of Art in drawing  and printmaking. In London I had  studios with ACAVA and also worked in their 'Artspace' mental health programme. After leaving London in 2009 I have been living in Wales near Cardiff.

I have been painting for some 35 years supporting this activity with a variety of jobs and part time jobs.  My work has always used the figure as a motif  and for some time has concentrated on depicting a single figure.


Exhibition History

2017Art Central Barry VOGA 20 years anniversary exhibition
2016Art central Art Central 10 year anniversary exhibition
October 2014Cardiff open. Cardiff Arts Collective
October 2014Beep Wales, Elysium gallery Swansea
2014Barry our Town, Travellers gallery, Barry
Oct 2013CARDIFF OPEN, Cardiff arts Collective
Sept 2013TAKE FIVE' Art Central, Barry, Vale of Glamorgan
2013Welsh Artist of The Year, St David's Hall Cardiff
2012VOGA at Barry Festival
2012VOGA at Y Galeri Caerphilly
2012VOGA at The Eisteddfod
2011Welsh Artist of The Year, St David's Hall Cardiff
2005Hyogo International Competitiion of Painting, Kobe, Japan
2001/1999Art Now, Gracefield Arts Centre, Dumfries, Dumfries & Galloway
2000/2001Glasgow Art fair
1993/1991Nancy Siverman gallery, Los Angeles
1991/1988Compass gallery, Glasgow
1987Leicestershire Schools Exhibition,
1986Lamont Gallery, Brthnal Green, London
19857 Painters, Battersea Arts Centre, London
19844 Painters, Royal Festival hall, London
1986House Gallery, Primrose Hill, London
2004LCP Gallery Space, Kentish Town, London
1995Alternative Art galleries, London
2003Attic Space, Hatton wall, London
1999The Tollbooth, Kirkcudbright, Dumfries & Galloway
1997Centrepoint Gallery, London
1995Coventry Galler,y London
1986Rank Xerox Open Entry Print Exhibition
1985Religious Spirit in Art, Wnestminster Cathedral, London
1984Cheltenham Festival, Sylvia Plath prints
1974Mid-Pennine Arts Association gallery, Blackburn