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About the Exhibition

3 October 2019

Gladwell & Patterson

3 October 2019




“What more could an artist wish for but to repay my debt to the animals I painted.” David Shepherd CBE 1931 – 2017

David Shepherd is considered to be one of the finest wildlife artists of the last 100 years. David’s distinctive style stems from a personal attachment with the animals of Kenya. As a boy, he dreamt of becoming a game warden to no avail, and was fortunate when his early artistic career as an aviation artist led to a commission from the RAF in 1960. On consignment in Kenya, inspired by the animals that he encountered, he painted his first wildlife painting which would change the course of his career; a rhinoceros chasing a Twin Pioneer aeroplane, capturing two of his great passions.

In the following years, David’s popularity grew and he quickly became the celebrated artist and conservationist for which he is remembered today. Throughout his career David was inspired to protect the elephants, tigers and other animals that he depicted with such delight. His subjects were painted with dignity and grandeur and his compositions allowed them to take centre stage amongst the breathtaking scenery of his beloved Africa.

David’s technique of combining photorealism with his broad impressionist technique and his impeccably accurate palette, instantly strikes a chord with the viewer, but above all it is his love of the animals that shines through in his paintings creating an instant empathy for them with his audience.

In 1984, David set up the David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation in order to repay his debt to the animals that had given him so much success as an artist. Today, the Foundation’s vision is ‘The Art of Survival’: to fight, protect and engage on behalf of endangered wildlife around the world. For more than 30 years it has worked to influence policy, shift attitudes and provide an unwavering voice for wildlife conservation from grass roots to the world stage. To date it has invested more than £9m in key front line projects across Africa and Asia, that are helping to secure a future for threatened wildlife in natural habitats.

Gladwell & Patterson have long championed David’s artistic and charitable work, across the three generations of the Fuller family. Our 266 year old gallery has been privileged to display David’s superb paintings over the decades. Together the David Shepherd Wildlife Foundation and Gladwell & Patterson hope David’s rich artistic heritage will raise awareness and funds for the Foundations continuing work. A percentage of proceeds from the sale of the paintings during this exciting exhibition in our gallery in Knightsbridge will be donated to the Foundation for educational projects in Zambia.

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