Adam Forman: February 2016
Born 1954: attended life drawing at St Martins in London as a schoolboy. Considered Art school in 1971 but opted for University. Left fairly ignominiously in 1973, not before shooting Super 8mm footage on a camera borrowed from the Physics department of Cambridge University. This particular film has yet to be edited. A circuitous route to hospital work and medicine followed, beginning training as a doctor in 1979. The transformative powers of art were dormant until 1990, now a GP, and reconnected with life drawing. Began painting again but dealing only in abstraction until 1999. Finally entered art school in Sheffield in 1993 on a part time painting BA for five years.
Upending a Sheffield career as a GP moved to London in 1999 to start an MA in Fine Art at the University of East London. Increasingly interested in public spaces my final show included many performances spaces, the figure(in the form of the artist) appearing in several of these; the doctor appearing in many fewer. The artist also began appearing in his own films; dealing with naked anger and identity.
A part time Professional Doctorate followed; again for five years as the artist had become a fixture as a GP in Hackney. There ensued a series of work exploring the spaces patients and Drs inhabit; “Dr Dr”.
The preoccupation with public spaces then focused on travel spaces and included a Travel Scholarship to research the psychology of travel spaces in Moscow, Cairo and Kuala Lumpur. This culminated in a final Doctoral show of paintings, drawings and also nineteen films and a sequence of still photographs, Passage 2006.
Surveillance, incidental or intended,developed as a recurrent theme, including the surveillance surrounding the development of the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. This resulted in the CCTV series in 2010; painted images from imaginary CCTV cameras.
Using newspaper photo images as a source I explored the world of Ascot racegoers and their rarefied world. The Ascot series resulted. The Precious project has preoccupied me for the last 15 months. Again the initial source material was from newspaper photos; those of Agbogbloshie by Kevin McElvaney published in the Guardian and those of Men’s fashion week published across various print and digital media.
I am currently developing two new projects: Hackney 365, an observational study over a year, and Inconvenient Lunacy, dealing with inhabitants of asylums from the nineteenth century onwards detained for the convenience of others .