"Sojourner's window dressing"
Brad Phillips, "Sojourner's window dressing," 2013, watercolour on paper, 22" x 15".
BRAD PHILLIPS - Collector's Pick
By Maureen Latta
Vancouver artist Brad Phillips finds resonance with the response William Eggleston gave when he was asked what he was trying to do: The American photographer said he was writing a novel.
While Phillips’ photorealist paintings might be more like a diary than a novel, the two narrative forms are related. “I’m interested in the idea that autobiography and fiction are really synonymous,” he says. “When I have a show and it appears really autobiographical or personal, the truth is that like in a memoir or autobiography, there’s a great deal of editing.”
Phillips deals with the intimate images of daily life – regardless of whether the subject matter is embarrassing. “I like to try to relate to the audience on an emotional rather than intellectual level,” he says. “Also, I like making people uncomfortable to some extent in terms of content, whether it’s sexual or psychological.”
Influenced more by confessional poets such as Anne Sexton and Robert Lowell than other painters, Phillips, a published essayist, sometimes incorporates text into his work. A one-time finalist in the RBC New Canadian Painting Competition, he has exhibited in Toronto, Boston and New York as well as several European cities. “My work seems to be more easily grasped and collected in Europe, maybe because figurative painting has more of a history.”
Brad Phillips is represented by Macaulay & Co. Fine Art in Vancouver, where he shows in September. His work is priced at $3,000 to $12,000.