Andrew Douglas-Forbes

Andrew, native of Gower, was tutored at a young age by the Canadian painter Gordon Stuart, the philosophy of paint being of prime importance. From a very musical family, he studied Clarinet privately with Martin Ronchetti at the Welsh College and Sidney Fell at the Royal College, and finally Swansea Art College under Patricia Briggs where drawing skills were emphasised. Music beckoned , some inner voice was calling and Andrew studied as Prestigious Scholar at the RA in London , followed by post grad Opera studies . Andrew won the world competition ‘Musica Per Roma ‘ Tenor scholarship and was immediately signed up with the Ornella Cogliolo Agency,  singing smaller roles. Andrew broadcast live across Europe whilst continuing studies with Italian singers of the old school and sang principal roles in France, America, Armenia and Russia, whilst still painting regularly from his studio in Arezzo Tuscany .

Hiraeth was calling, Andrew decided to move back to Mid Wales where both painting and singing are still practiced in tandem, alongside some teaching in Italian technique.
‘Everything relates to ‘feeling’ ‘mood’ ‘colour’, both painting and singing , one is the other … expressing humanity … being present , engaging with ‘audience ‘ an inner conviction. Painting a tulip for example is as deeply felt as singing Verdi requiem ‘Ingemisco ‘.

“One gets asked which do I prefer – there is no distinction, it is impossible to say, having done both so long they are now me, at my fingertips, in my mind constantly … Growing up on Gower with a large flower garden, I now have a small town walled garden where I grow many plants to paint , also a life long love of antiques and ceramic show in my work. Landscape painting has taken a back seat of late, but sketching trips are constant and the odd ‘cottage in Landscape’ appear from time to time.”

“To sum up, I can say in maturity that I am lucky to observe ‘Welshness’ as a part outsider, not of any old Welsh stock, but born Welsh with a strong Welsh accent and speaking some Welsh.  I have the privilege to gaze on  Wales as if from afar, I don’t fit in which in itself  is a gift, I see things from many sides … ‘ Cymru,  I don’t belong to you but join with you wholeheartedly ‘ ..

Andrew has exhibited widely at home and abroad and is represented in the national collection .

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