West Face of the Aiguille du Plan from the Aiguille du Midi, French Alps near Chamonix

Artist's Statement

My work is a response to the complex array of visual aesthetic stimuli that I experience in the world around me. The visual triggers producing the need to record such responses are many and varied. They are likely to include the shadow patterns in an urban landscape, the reflected highlight on a portrait subject’s face, the subtle colours of autumnal moorland and the delicate tones and curves of a life model.

The desire to capture and communicate these visual encounters has currently led me to adopt a representational approach. However, I am also aware that the marks made when I am translating what I see carry their own intrinsic visual aesthetic quality so I strive to achieve an optimal effect by consciously balancing the expression of the subject with the quality of the surface that I am creating.

It is the balancing of these two forms of aesthetic that has driven and continues to direct the development of my work and which tends to dictate the medium that I select for a given piece of art.

Currently I am working in, acrylics, oils and pastels. Oils are used for landscapes – particularly for outdoors work and I also find that oils are the best medium for portraits. The pastel technique that I have developed for studio applications deliberately aims at a complex surface by the use of acrylic underpainting on a prepared board.

I have been a climber and mountaineer for many years and have worked in the environment so these themes have naturally tended to feed through into the subjects that I particularly respond to. Not surprisingly therefore, landscapes tend to be a dominant topic of my work although more recently I have found that working to a theme – such as the still life painting of flowers, provides an interesting and stimulating discipline.

Malcolm Barton MBE


Certificate of Higher Education (Fine Art) Wolverhampton University 1990.


1987 Derbyshire Whitworth (medal winner)

2018 Highly Commended Award - Royal Birmingham Society of Artis - Open All Media Exhibition


For the past 30 years or so I have exhibited widely. Some of the galleries exhibiting my work have included:
  • Derbyshire Open, Buxton
  • Mid Art (Dudley Gallery)
  • Royal Birmingham Society of Artists
  • Shropshire Open Art Exhibition, Shrewsbury
  • South Yorkshire Open, Cooper Gallery, Barnsley
  • Leeds Fine Artists Annual Exhibitions
  • Doncaster Open
  • Lupton Square Gallery
  • Pastel Society Annual Exhibition, Mall Galleries, London
  • Royal Institute of Oil painters Annual Exhibition, Mall Galleries, London
  • Gallery Oldham
  • The Station, Richmond
  • Royal Scottish Academy
  • Royal Glasgow Institute of Fine Art
Other organisations

I am president of Leeds Fine Artists - a collective of professional artists covering the Yorkshire Region and a member of Fife Dunfermline Printmakers Workshop