‘I haven’t finished yet’: Yorkshire-born artist Phil Shaw returns to his roots
A Huddersfield-born artist, who has work in collections all over the world, has exhibited his work in West Yorkshire for the first time in 38 years.
Dr Phil Shaw, 64, has unveiled a retrospective exhibition named ‘Let Me Out, I Haven’t Finished Yet’ at The Artworks 1830 Gallery in Halifax.
He told the Yorkshire Standard: “John Ross, who is the guiding light behind the Artworks Gallery is a very good friend, and when I discovered he started it, I chipped in a bit to support it and he suggested some months later I have a show.
“The idea that appealed to me was that John suggested I do a retrospective. So the work that is up is a sample of the work I’ve done for the last, almost 50 years. It’s a whistlestop tour through everything I’ve ever done even including the music I’ve been involved in.”
The collection of works – with older works from as far back as the 1960s – span the whole studio, and even include Dr Shaw’s bookshelf prints that were gifted to world leaders at the G8 summit last year.
His work now hangs at The White House, The Kremlin, The Elysee Palace as well as Downing Street.
Dr Shaw recounted: “In 9:30 in the morning, I got a text saying my work would soon be hanging in the White House and I really did think someone was winding me up. I couldn’t believe it. But it turned out to be true.
“I doubt very much that I’ll ever see these works, but it’s a privilege to get a commission like that.”
Furthermore, amongst his list of collectors include Jeremy Paxman, Lee Evans, Jack Dee, Derren Brown and writer Anthony Horowitz.
Closer to home, his work can be found hanging in Huddersfield Town’s John Smith’s Stadium where he designed the supporter’s Roll of Honour, unveiled by actor Reece Dindale in 2006.
A former student at Leeds College of Art and the Royal College of Art in London, Dr Shaw has taught print-making at Middlesex University since 1980 and can look back on more than 40 years as an artist.
He said: “I was younger than six and did a drawing of a Scottish bagpiper, why I don’t know…
“But I remember my mother picking it up and running next door to the neighbour and everyone was very impressed. That was the first memory I have drawing anything.”
The ‘Let Me Out, I Haven’t Finished Yet’ exhibition is open to the public and closes on 6 July.