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Leicestershire space-age artist finalist in national art competition

A Leicestershire artist has made the finals of a national Art of the Year competition, with his space travel inspired paintings.

Matthew Turner was crowned runner up in the PACK & SEND annual Art of the Year competition, which celebrates the works of up and coming UK artists.

Leicester Time: Leicestershire space-age artist finalist in national art competition
Picture: Matthew Turner

The company has handled packing and shipping of artworks by some of the world’s most famous artists, including Banksy, Damien Hirst, Andy Worhol, Tracey Emin and Jeff Koons.

“I’m really pleased to have my artwork recognised in this way by PACK & SEND, which has worked with some of the most famous and respected fine artists in the world,” said the Whitwick native.

“It’s great to see an international company of their standing supporting and championing artists at grassroots level, helping artists like myself introduce their work to wider audiences.”

Mr Turner has been inspired by space travel since he first saw the Vostok rocket in 1995, while living and studying Art in Moscow.

He says: “I studied for a Fine Art painting degree in the 1990s and had an opportunity to study at the Moscow Institute of Architecture at that time. The experience was very influential to me and my artwork and in particular the time I spent at the Moscow Memorial Museum of Cosmonautics.

“The technology struck me, the art and the symbolism. I went on to explore my own use of symbolism and abstract forms in my painting.  I am also influenced by Cold War space race propaganda and Retro Sci-fi art and my intention as an artist is to work in the great tradition of Artists in the NASA Art Program and Soviet Cosmic School artist.

Leicester Time: Leicestershire space-age artist finalist in national art competition

“In April 2022 I was honoured to be asked to exhibit my work at the Legends of Space live show in Lausanne, Switzerland, in association with NASA and Lockheed Martin and last year I organised and co-curated an art exhibition at Leicester’s Space Park.

“I am an elected artist member of the International Association of Astronomical Artists and I was recently awarded funding from Arts Council England to visit Kennedy Space Centre and meet with Bert Ulrich and artists from the NASA Art Program, develop my creative practice and deliver STEAM workshops in the East Midlands.”