Howson, Peter (b.1958)
Howson has been committed to art since four years after his birth in Isleworth, West London. Very single-minded, he would lock himself away in a small room at the top of the house and make pictures, ‘really happy in my own little world’. As he grew older, Howson discovered Picasso and Cubism, got interested in Salvador Dali and Surrealism, started to study Old Masters like Leonardo da Vinci and Michelangelo. ‘I used to get a real buzz from just looking at paintings’. That buzz has never stopped. ‘My mind is very visual’, says Howson. ‘I mean, I imagine things. When I’m actually talking to someone I’m thinking about something. My brain builds another picture’. There’s an obvious connection between this powerful visual faculty and Howson’s later custom of working from the imagination rather than from life.