Roy-Collinson-Website-Header-v2.jpg

Roy Collinson

Roy Collinson

Roy Collinson was born on Valentine’s Day, 1946 in Harringay, London. He spent much of his early life at Friern Barnet Psychiatric Hospital in North London, moving to Norfolk in 1981. When the Barrington Farm Art Barn Studio opened in 1987 for people with learning disabilities, Collinson found his calling in art as it offered him an outlet for his memories and stories of the past. 

Full Biography

Roy Collinson was born on Valentine’s Day, 1946 in Harringay, London. He spent much of his early life at Friern Barnet Psychiatric Hospital in North London, moving to Norfolk in 1981. When the Barrington Farm Art Barn Studio opened in 1987 for people with learning disabilities, Collinson found his calling in art as it offered him an outlet for his memories and stories of the past. A prolific artist, he worked strictly from 8am to 5pm every day in his shared studio, and often out of hours in the privacy of his own room. Drawing on his memories and cultivating his imagination, Collinson produced hundreds of works on paper, exploring a variety of themes in great detail, repeating and altering the subject matter with each picture. Themes included architectural landscapes, film and TV characters, trains, aliens and Native American Indians. Mostly choosing pencil and crayon, Collinson often worked and re-worked his pictures until the paper tore.

Not interested in the art of others, Collinson was very focused on his own vision. The absence of any formal art training enabled him to create in a way that was much more direct and spontaneous than many contemporary artists. His technique and use of colour were uninhibited and he worked freely to create original images.

Collinson almost always signed his works ‘ROY’ in a block in the top right hand corner, emphasising the letters with bold colourful outlines. During his life Collinson exhibited regularly in Norfolk, and after passing in 1999 his work has been exhibited in exhibitions both in the UK and internationally. His work was recently acquired by LAM in Lille.

(Text written with help from Sarah Ballard)

Exhibition Highlights

2019 Paraart, Japan, Group exhibition to tie in with Paralympics
2016 Outsider Art Fair Paris, Hotel du Duc, with Outside In
2011 Exhibition #4, Museum of Everything, London
1999 Group show, Garde Rail Gallery, Seattle
1997 Solo show, St. Brannocks Gallery, Norfolk