Photo: Martin Bollen
Finding stillness in the hustle and bustle...
Hey there, great to see you here. My name is Nick Walker. I make photos, drawings and paintings based around the theme of the city. My subject matter comes to me on my everyday travels through my urban surroundings. Because I live and work in the Amsterdam area most of my pictures are impressions of the Dutch capital. However, I’ve included a few pictures based on other cities in the Netherlands and further afield.
My pictures can very often be pinpointed to a precise location. In my mind, it is essential to base my observations on the reality immediately around me. To enhance the fact that my pictures are rooted in the real, I have added the precise location of each image. In some cases, I have created an imaginary place that represents elements of a city but can’t be located on the map. These pictures represent a particular feeling of a place. They can be found under the heading Inner City.
If my art is about anything, then it’s about the unexpected beauty that can be seen in everyday life when we take the time to see it. However, we can only truly observe the world around us by walking. Although most modes of transport allow us to look at the world around us, walking, in my mind, is the only mode of transport that allows us to see. This thought is at the heart of my Walker City art project.
Walker City is about finding quiet moments and stillness in the hustle and bustle. A Walker City image could be of shoppers on a busy high street or reflections of light on the water. One thing they have in common is a search for contemplation and stillness. I first started developing this idea while I was at art school, so I have been making work that fits the Walker City theme since the 1990s.
The locations that fascinate me are hidden from plain sight, but they ask to be revealed. If something catches my eye, I get out my camera and snap a few shots. Looking back at those photos I edit them by changing the composition, brightness and colour settings. If the photo shows potential to work into a drawing or a painting then I use it as a reference point. First I work with pencil, pen and ink, and then, at a later stage, in paint.
Each image tells a story of place and time. My pictures are a record of where I was and what I saw there. Join me for a tour around Walker City and let me show you a few of the hidden treasures that I have seen.