MCLEOD, Robert

Nationality: New Zealand
Website: Website
New Zealand artist Born (1948) and grew up in Glasgow Is represented in public and private collections in New Zealand, Scotland and Australia

Robert McLeod attended the Glasgow School of Art, graduating in 1969 with a Diploma in Painting before

emigrating to Wellington, New Zealand in 1972.
McLeod’s peculiar form of expressionism is derived from a fascination with the physical properties of

paint. As such, an emphasis on the tactility of paint is a defining aspect of McLeod's style. In

focussing on the physicality of paint, McLeod celebrates the medium as an end rather than a means,

thereby redirecting interest to the qualities of the paint itself; its occupation of space, its

dependence on light for colour (and McLeod is known for exploring the vast range of colour available)

and the change in feel associated with differing styles of application (brush, palette knife, spray

etc).
As McLeod has confirmed, his painterly raison d’etre is, “…the paint itself. I want it to be scraped,

burnt, cut, pierced, scarred, glazed, wrinkled, aged like skin. I’m not trying to use paint to describe,

or decorate, to make a beautiful surface or object. I just want the paint to be." His passion is paint,

the physical and tactile qualities of it. Thick juicy layers of oil paint run, drip beed. Ooze, fester,

erupt and slip down the surfaces of his canvasses. McCleod loves the physical act of painting : “it is

an enjoyable process, sensual and massy, like life…” McLeod rarely makes statements about the content

of his work and so the titles of his painting become deliberately enigmatic, witty and elusive/allusive.

He is looking for an emotional intuitive response to his work.
His interest in the physical aspects of paint has led McLeod outside the realm of the traditional

rectangular canvas in favour of more unconventional constructions and supports that further emphasise

the natural tendencies of paint. These free-form supports reflect the fluidity and sensuality of paint,

while at the same time creating a tension of shape and colour unrivalled by the square.