About Julian Dourado

I am an artist and illustrator based in Oxford, UK. I studied illustration in Leicester, where I pursued my interest in pen drawing and printmaking. During this time, inspired by early modernist painters and classic English book illustrators, I developed an idiosyncratic visual language.

During the late 1990s I moved to the Cowley Road area in Oxford. After making numerous studies of my new local environment, both built and natural, I started to produce paintings that were much more abstract, but which still hint at the singular pictorial qualities of my earlier work.

Some of my work is informed by my interest in Hermetic philosophy, and the main particular constant themes are landscape, myth and magic. I draw visual inspiration from things as diverse as expressionist woodcuts, gardens and urban green spaces, medieval alchemical manuscripts, surrealism, and classic English book illustration.

I tend to work slowly on my paintings, producing images that are balanced and contemplative. However the linocut prints and pen-and-ink drawings usually contain striking imagery that is at once both mysterious and humorous.

Dunce, pen, 2003 

I am an associate member of the Magdalen Road Studios.

More of my work can be seen here


Local landscape

My favourite local place is Iffley Fields (including Aston's Eyot and the Kidneys). Here the landscape appears full of contractions. Neither city nor country, it is not a complete wasteland nor does it seem to be cultivated for any obvious purpose. There are vast tracts of nettles, docks, brambles and thistles - ugly and spikey plants that don't welcome at first, but after a while take on an air of vitality, groundedness and reality that is not often met in garden flowers.

Landscape drawing, pen, 2004 

This whole area is full of clues of a long history of human intervention, before it was allowed to settle back into its semiwild state. As I walk though the fields, especailly on early spring mornings, I seem to have at the back of my mind half formed pictures of what may of happened there long ago, though I must admit that I know little of its actual past.


Some exhibitions include:

Bid at the Ovada Gallery, Oxford 2008
Open Oxford at Modern Art Oxford, 2008
Exhibition of Three Artists at the Ark-T-Centre, Oxford 2004
Tri-Angular at Fusion, Oxford 2003
!Scapes at The X-Change Gallery, Oxford 2002
Takeaway at Magdalen Road Studios, 2001