Michael Flynn is one of Britain’s most remarkable sculptors working in clay today and godfather of a new movement of figurative, ceramic narrative art sweeping Europe that Messums Wiltshire has been proud to celebrate. Born in 1947 in Germany to Irish parents, he has lived all around the world and is inspired by everything from Romanian and Japanese poetry to ancient Greek myths. His works are modelled on the kind of courtly figurines made in the 18th century by Wedgwood and Meissen but subverted, presenting them wrestling, jumping, hanging upside down and in displays of orgiastic candour.
Trained as a painter, his works are highly sensuous, displaying a love of colour and a range of succulent glazes. Drawing too has always been an important part of his practise and the lyrical lines of his works, testify to a life spent experimenting with the graphic arts.
In the show at Messums Wiltshire we will be showing examples of works from all periods of Flynn’s career – from his early polychromatic pieces inspired by the relationship between Dionysus and the harlequin to his rougher, more craquelured stoneware portraits of dancing animals and most recently, to more etoliated pure white porcelain works inspired by the idea of Vanitas. Flynn is a member of the International Academy of Ceramics (IAC) and attended Birmingham College of Art, Worcester College of Education and the College of Art in Cardiff where he now lives. His work is in 40 major collections worldwide including the Museum of Art and Design in New York and The Victoria and Albert Museum.
Messum’s Wiltshire is a pioneering multi-purpose gallery and arts centre celebrating the creative endeavour.