Heckel’s Horse Jr.

Edgeworth Johnstone
Highgate Gallery
08 - 21 Mar 2024

(Detail) Untitled: oil on canvas 51x61cm. © Heckel’s Horse Jr 2023.
All rights reserved.

Gallery times: Wednesdays to Fridays 13:00-17:00,
Saturdays 11:00-16:00, Sundays 11:00-17:00,
Mondays & Tuesdays Closed
Private View: Friday 08 March 2024 18:00-20:30

Heckel’s Horse Jr. is an alias used by Muswell Hill artist and musician Edgeworth Johnstone.

Johnstone started painting in 2005, aged 28. Three years later he began exhibiting regularly with the Stuckism art group, a movement which developed in 1999 to promote figurative as opposed to conceptual art and was concerned with a ‘quest for authenticity’ and art which had a spiritual value, a reaction against conceptual art and postmodernism. Through Stuckism he became friends with the group’s two founders, Charles Thomson and Billy Childish.

Johnstone and Childish began painting in partnership in 2013 which came to be named by Childish “Heckel’s Horse”. The name may well derive from Erich Heckel, one of Johnstone’s favourite painters, and the work of Die Brucke  (The Bridge) and Der Blaue Reiter (The Blue Rider) groups of which the work is reminiscent, with its often figurative, intuitive and sometimes dreamlike qualities.

Untitled: oil on canvas 61x76cm. © Heckel’s Horse Jr 2023. All rights reserved.

Heckel’s Horse has made over 150 paintings to date. In 2022 Johnstone – working alone as Heckel’s Horse Jr., as he was the younger of the partnership – began a re-examination of the Heckel’s Horse oeuvre which was often a composite of Childish and Johnstone’s imaginations. Some of these paintings use a reference photograph or work by another artist as a starting  point. Johnstone says how interesting it is to see how the works develops when he paints “both parts.” He found that as he started making the Heckel’s Horse Jr. paintings they took on a life of their own, leaving him wondering why it took him nearly a decade to get started on them.

The exhibition at Highgate Gallery is Johnstones’s first solo exhibition outside his home studio. His hope is that people like the work and are encouraged to learn more about Heckel’s Horse and Stuckism with their strong local connections to Muswell Hill and East Finchley. Both are examples of like-minded artists making work collaboratively: producing images they could not have foreseen or achieved independently.

Untitled: linocut print 30x21cm. © Heckel’s Horse Jr 2023. All rights reserved.

These figurative works in oil on canvas range in size from 76 x 61cms to 152 x 122cms.
The linocuts on paper are A4. All the works are for sale.

Some previous exhibitions:
November 2022. Christie’s, King Street London, Charity Auction Arms Around the Child included a Heckel’s Horse Jr. painting
October 2014. Pushkin House, Exhibition of collaborative paintings with Billy Childish
May 2010. Tate Modern, Exhibition #2 Five drawings exhibited

For further information contact: Edgeworth Johnstone

The Exhibition co-ordinator: Jane Berkin