David Sullivan was born in Plumstead, London in 1969, and studied at Erith College of Technology, the Kent Institute of Art and Design (Canterbury), and the Royal College of Art.
“Philosophically and ideologically I stand with Marxism, and the works I make in general have a political resonance or undertone, and are located within the traditions of Realism. As far as possible I try to keep the concerns I explore in the studio unbounded – that is to say I allow myself to draw inspiration from wherever it might present itself – and work from a range of ‘found and appropriated’ imagery’. The problem, however, is always the same – to discover the complex set of conditions that make for successful painting so that an individual work contains its own bounded poetry, its own world, and its own infinity.
Different strategies are allowed, from the ambiguous to the oblique. The register shifts, and the themes can drift – from historical conflict or optimism, to contemporary social, psychological, or moral anxieties, but the works must have something real to say about our condition of existence, and have a connection with lived experience. Sometimes the paintings oscillate at the cusp of the surreal, or our sense of the beautiful, and sometimes they just emerge from the tragedy of fate… or the politics of survival. Despite typically working from reproduced imagery the real search is for the expressive language which can adequately describe the fractured world of man. Ultimately painting has the necessary conviction if the aesthetic evaluation can determine its truthfulness.”