Biography

Bernard McGuigan was born in Britain in 1956, and started making sculpture aged 16.

Formerly an associate of the Royal Society of British Sculptors, he has exhibited widely including The Royal Academy of Arts Summer Exhibition. His work has been featured in many exhibitions and is in a number of private and public collections both in the UK and around the world.

In the tradition of the 20th Century Sculptors, such as Modigliani, Gill, Hepworth and Moore, Bernard uses the method of direct carving by hand into the stone.

The pieces are graceful and deceptively simple, in terms of both their carving style and of their tranquil potency. When first coming across an exhibition of his work, we delight in the perceived tension between stone as a reliable and in relation to our own lives, timeless material, and what we know of the yielding (and less reliable) contours of the human body. With time this sensation may be remembered in the mind like a line from a requiem, quietly insistent.

In returning to his theme and its many variations, McGuigan does not set out to "challenge" us in the contemporary and confrontational sense of the word. There is no mention of "removing boundaries" in his mission statement. On the contrary, in a form of homage to the way that stones have long been used to mark boundaries and places of passage, his sculptures appear to define the limits of individual tenderness in a harsh and competitive world. Standing between artist and spectator, they mediate the ever-present challenge of being alive.


Image: Portrait of the Artist as  a young man.

Photography by Sabine Tilly

Critical acclaim

"McGuigan is an outstanding sculptor in stone".

Andrew Graham-Dixon, art critic, writer and documentary maker.

"His works abstraction and lack of specific identity render them universally accessible and appealing."

Dr Sally Dormer, Victoria and Albert Museum.

"I have been a collector and admirer of McGuigan's work for many years."

Sir Christopher Ondaatje, philanthropist, explorer and writer.


Image: Working in the studio.

Current exhibitions :

Rye Art Gallery 20/21

Jenna Burlingham Fine Art, 20/21.

Royal Academy 20/21

LindenHall  20/21


Future exhibitions / projects :

Art auction at Charleston in aid of The Barefoot Opera. 

"Songs Set In Stone" ( work in progress ) a museum based project with musician, singer and songwriter Bev Lee Harling.


Image: Solo exhibition of recent abstract sculpture at Sir David Chipperfield building London.

Using Format