Born and raised in a working class family in Rusholme in Manchester, David Wilde (birth name Norman Shacklock) was accepted into the Manchester School of Art at the age of fifteen. Surviving direct air raids as a draughtsman during WWII, he became a technical illustrator by profession and was also a successful erotic illustrator on the continent where he exhibited alongside Dali and Picasso.
However, it is when you look beyond his professional life that you discover the secret Wilde; a metaphysical poet and abstract artist who captured radical images directly from his surroundings. Wilde had rejected the typically Northern way of representing Britain and replaced it with his own Futurist inspired vibrant pictorial style.
Oscillating from bold, geometric lines to impasto swirls of colour, Wilde would pick out every colour in the landscape even if found in only minute quantities ‘All the colours are out there if you look’
David Wilde died in the late 1970’s leaving behind an incredible body of work inspired by the industrial North and North Wales and which was only discovered after his death. An intriguing missing piece of art history which the Watergate Street gallery has the unique opportunity of sharing with you.