In Neal Tait’s paintings, images of everyday objects such as a piece of furniture or a birdhouse, are combined with ambiguous, embryonic forms that join together the uneasy space between physical reality and the subconscious mind. The result is an almost familiar world with an eerie dreamlike quality that impresses its unnerving mood upon the viewer. Tait’s works are based on found materials, photographs and images from the media which he distorts through the manipulation of scale and colour. He strips away the original meaning from these commonplace objects and figures, and mutates them into pure, self-contained forms. Influences include Philipp Otto Runge, Fernand Léger, and the psychoanalytical developments of Henri Michaux and André Breton.
Tait was born in Edinburgh in 1965 and graduated from the Chelsea School of Art, and the Royal College of Art. Major solo exhibitions include Les Toits de Parise, White Cube (London, 2009) and Neal Tait: The Dressmaker Who Lived on The Outskirts, Tanya Bonakdar Gallery (New York, 2008). In 2009, Tait’s paintings formed part of the Turps Banana group shows at the Galleria Marabini in Bologna and Milan. More recently, his works were included in Tate Britain’s seminal Watercolour exhibition (London, 2011), alongside examples by J.M.W. Turner, Anish Kapoor and Tracey Emin. He is represented in numerous public and private collections, including the Zabludowicz Collection and the Kunsthalle Manheim, Manheim.