Originally from Portsmouth, Nicholas Ashton moved to the North in the early eighties to study Fine Art at Sunderland Art College. His work at this time comprised sculpture and paintings inspired by the works of Baselitz, Auerbach, Bacon and Beckmann. The work was figurative, narrative and expressionist in style.
In 1984 he studied sculpture at St. Martin’s School of Art. Here his preoccupation with working from the body as ‘way in’ to the understanding of corporeality and the translation of physicality into sculpture resulted in some dynamic work literally hacked into existence by means of primitive tools and techniques including splitting the material with steel wedges and hammers, and cutting and shaping the forms using an axe or an adze.
He went on to develop a painting style characterised by an expressionist and emotional use of paint as a plastic material and later moved towards pure abstraction and a concern with spiritual nature of colour.
He currently lives in London and his recent works of assemblages, paintings and sculpture are a response to the enormous changes in our society, from the advent of a global pandemic to the changes in work patterns, lifestyles and technology.