His work has mainly been about the landscape, focusing primarily upon the urban environment. The artist states that he was initially drawn to the gasometers and tower blocks that populated the area which he grew up in around southwest London.
The paintings has evolved from a pictorial landscape tradition, working directly from observation and referencing the work of the Euston Road School, the photographs of Bernd and Hilla Becher, and the paintings of Edward Hopper.
His recent paintings use a number of themes as a starting point. Recording the city from high and oblique vantage points and making work that hovers between abstraction and figuration.
Using photographs taken in low light reconciles his desire to make work using a personal colour palette but creating paintings with believable space and forms that the viewer can project their own personal experience into.
Returning to drawing directly from observation has helped the artist acquire a more conceptual aspect to the work. He says seek out the beauty in banality and the absurd juxtapositions of the city, trying to fashion together disparate pictorial influences into a coherent painted surface.
Ultimately Preece wants to express the excitement and dynamism of the city while encouraging the viewer to consider the urban environment differently. He hopes to lead them to reassess their daily surroundings with a different eye.
Born in 1970. Studied at Chelsea School of Art 1988–89, the Slade School of Fine Art 1989-93 and the Princes Drawing School 2006-07. Given a Boise Scholarship to travel and make work in the USA in 1995 – 96. Work has been included in a group exhibition with the Allen Gallery New York, Chelsea. Angela Flowers 'Small is Beautiful' in 2006 and 2008. John Martin 'Altitude' at Ashurst in 2006, Sarah Myerscough, 'Subjective' in 2005 and Five New Artists at Purdy Hicks in 2002. He recently had a one-man show at Gillions Art in London.
Commissions have been undertaken for amongst others, the Canary Wharf Group, Bayer plc and the Topland Group. His work is in both private and public collections including University College London, Bayer plc, Unilever plc and the Canary Wharf Group.
2006-07 Prince's Drawing School, London E1 Post Graduate Drawing Year
1989-93 Slade School of Fine Art, London, WC1 BA (Hons) Fine Art
1988-89 Chelsea School of Art, London, SW7 Foundation Course
AWARDS AND RESIDENCIES
2001 Runner up - Laing Landscape and Seascape Award
1998 Artist in Residence, Slade Summer School
1997 Second Prize - Gilchrist Fischer Memorial Award
1995 Boise Scholarship to travel and make work in America
1994 Stoves Award Winner
1994 Finalist - Gilchrist Fischer Memorial Award
1993 Henry Tonks Medal for Painting
1992 Slade Project Award to make paintings in North Wales
1991 Second Prize Slade Summer Competition
1990 William Coldstream Prize: Slade School of Fine Art
2008 Solo Show Gillions Art, Battersea, London
2006 Solo Show, Slade Summer School, University College London
1999 Fox Williams, Solicitors, London
1998 Solo Show, Slade Gallery, University College London
1994 Solo Show, Slade Summer School, University College London
SELECTED GROUP EXHIBITIONS
2008 Allen Gallery, Chelsea, New York
2008 Small is Beautiful, Flowers East, London
2008 Mauger Gallery, Bath
2006-08 London Group
2007 Royal Society of Portrait Painters, Mall Gallery, London
2006 'Altitude' John Martin at Ashursts, London
2006 Small is Beautiful, Flowers Central, Cork Street
2005 Hunting Prize Exhibition, Royal College of Art
2004 'Subjective' Sarah Myerscough Fine Art
2004 C.A.S Artfutures, City of London School
2003 'Recent Acquisitions Show', Unilever Building, London
2002 'Five New Artists', Purdy Hicks Gallery, Bankside, London
2001 'Urban Rhythms', Sarah Myerscough Fine Art, London
2001 Laing Landscape and Seascape Award, Mall Galleries, London
1998 Group Show as part of the Gilchrist Fischer Memorial Award, Cadogan Contemporary,
2006 Elected to the London Group
2005 Commissioned to make a number of drawings for Ian Rowland's book on Drawing
2004 Commission for the offices of Topland Group
2003 Commission to make a painting of Stoke Court for Bayer plc
2002 Commission for the Canary Wharf Group
2000 Commission to make portrait of up coming actor Tom Hardy
1992 Commissioned to make drawings for Ron Bowens Book 'Drawing Masterclass'
December 08 Review by Sue Hubbard 'Small is Beautiful XXVI'
February 05 Drawing the City, article for Ian Rowlands.
April 04 Review in the Saturday Independent
05/04/01 'Sense of Place', Artist and Illustrator
20/01/98 Review by Andrew Taylor, The Independent
19/01/98 Review by John McEwen, The Sunday Telegraph
July 1994 Drawings reproduced in Artist and Illustrator
Jan 1994 Painting reproduced in Homes and Gardens
10/1/94 Review by John McEwen, The Sunday Telegraph
15/01/94 Review by William Packer, The Financial Times
10/12/93 Review by David Hammond, Huddersfield Daily Examiner
Works in the collections of Bayer plc, Topland Group, Canary Wharf Group plc, Unilever plc, University College London, Peat Marwick Accountants, GMO Woolley, Steven Drake Solicitors, Prentis, Donegan and Partners and Stoves, Liverpool. Work also in Private Collections in Britain, America, France, Australia, and Hong Kong.