Toby Ward



Toby Ward learned much of his technique from his greatly missed father John, but he is no mere 'son of, and the other influences from which he has benefited are a complex brew, making him his own artist. Unlike John, he tends to imagine his figures, rather than use models - except in portraits, of course - but he is also an artist of record, painting peacekeepers in Bosnia, the life of the Royal Opera House and The Ritz, the conservation of Chastleton and St Martin-in-the-Fields, and touring with The Prince of Wales. There are also sporting occasions of many kinds. In his typical genre subjects, however, he often prefers more restful forms of enjoyment. He spends lots of time in France and ascribes to the French a genius for creative idleness at all levels of society. 'I like cheap bars in northern France/ he asserts. 'I like the people who drink there, I like the unfussy pleasure of an evening in an uncomfortable room with two types of beer and a red wine, I like the casual companionship and the passing of time.'

Country Life, 7 Febuary 2008

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