Born in Croydon in 1953 and graduating in 1975 with an art degree from Coventry’s ‘Lanchester Polytechnic’, much of his practice to date has been based on figurative work influenced by traditional forms of iconography infused with a Pop Art sensibility. He cites his influences as Peter Blake, Andy Warhol and Wayne Thiebaud.
His giant ‘cassette’ paintings fit into the Pop Art genre and its motif of ‘elevating the mundane’, with an emphasis on the cassette itself as an icon in terms of its place in musical and cultural history. Horace calls these paintings ‘repositories of memory’ because they evoke a specific period of music history between the reel-to-reel tape and the compact disc and because music itself, even just a song title, provokes a stirring of memory/nostalgia. Each painting has been researched to serve as an accurate reminder of a great period when bands would take these small pieces of plastic home and listen to what they had recorded that day in the recording studio. The paintings celebrate not only the artifact itself, but also the cultural and historical context of seminal albums and the recording studios in which they were made. In Horace’s words "demo-cassettes often contained the bare bones of songs that went on to become classic pop hits but they were essentially disposable things. I often used to tape over them, making them into my own mixtapes." This is a series that is continually evolving and changing direction and will, therefore, continue to grow.
Horace has been exhibiting at selected galleries throughout the UK since 2009 and in 2016 he took his work to New York and Los Angeles for the first time. His recent ‘Americana’ series, paintings of street signs and diners, relate back to his adolescent years when he was heavily influenced by American cultural exports in terms of art, music and literature with artists like Edward Hopper and Alan D’Arcangelo. What is left out of the painting is as considered as what is included, making them highly stylized motifs of the American cityscape.