IN Dutch House's art café in Crayke, the work of the late York figurative and landscape painter Ray Fearn will be on show from tomorrow until December 20.

Ray, who died last year, drew his main inspiration from the European painting tradition, working predominantly with oil and acrylics on canvas and board.

He began his career by training as a graphic designer at York Art School and went on to study fine art painting in Coventry. He then blended the two disciplines to produce strong and arresting images, often comprising mysterious, imagined landscapes.

After graduation in 1973, Ray taught art in secondary and higher education across Yorkshire until taking retirement through ill health. It was only at this point that he could concentrate fully on his art, producing many bold paintings before his death.

He was a member of York Open Studios and his last show in 2013 contained new works produced while battling terminal illness.

Hampshire Chronicle:

Artwork by Ray Fearn

Influenced by the Yorkshire landscape, Ray was particularly fond of the Yorkshire Wolds and used to say he had discovered them before David Hockney! In turn, one of his exhibits at Dutch House, Bigger Logs, is a tribute to Hockney's bigger trees.

Ray was fascinated by the quality of light in the Wolds and it was a key source of inspiration for his creativity. “He would take many photographs of the area, from which he would then eventually produce a painting reinterpreting the view from an imaginative, cheeky and often mysterious view point," says his wife, Julie, who works as a volunteer in the Kunsthuis Gallery at Dutch House, incidentally.

Cecile Creemers, director of Kunthuis, has curated the Ray Fearn: Delving Into The Mystery show. "We discover a strong sense of stillness emerging in his style that is often contrasted with vivid, vibrant colours that engross the viewer," she says.

"His later works often subtly question the viewer’s expectation and allow us to simply delve into the arresting forms and shapes created with an element of surprise. Intrigued by the physical process of painting itself, Ray had an ability to draw the viewer in and become engrossed in the work and the power of the imagination."