David Winthrop

First Major exhibition of David Winthrop’s Notebooks
Master Drawings London
27 June – 5 July 2012

David Winthrop
As part of this years Master Drawings London Day & Faber is holding the first major exhibition of drawings and notebooks by David Winthrop (1948), ex saxophonist of Supertramp and draughtsman.

David Winthrop is son of a GI and UK mother, born in New Jersey shortly after the Second World War, but returned to boarding school in England at the age of eight. Being based both in the UK and USA he often traveled across the Atlantic on the QE and QM. When he was fifteen he received a saxophone from his grandfather, Major William Barraclough MC, with a copy of the Melody Maker in which he saw an advert and swiftly left school to pursue a career in rock music, joining a band in Rome.

On return to the UK, he went to Colchester School of Art, whose staff at the time included Bawden, Nash and Ardizzone though left to join another band before he graduated. He played in the first edition of Supertramp in 1970, after which he went back to Colchester as a mature student though, again, didn’t finish as he joined the band Chicken Shack in 1977, and The Secret Affair from 1979. As a saxophonist/vocalist he has recorded over 30 LPs, toured the world and worked with everyone from Doctor John to the Ruts.

During one tour his father had an accident resulting in him coming home for eighteen months to look after two hundred and fifty sheep in the Lake District. He too suffered a serious accident in the Bahamas when recording with Dave Stewart from the Eurythmics, after which he became involved in the criminal law system working as a member of the defence team.

Drawing has been constant throughout Winthrop’s musical career, he has always kept books, compulsively filling them with a variety of creatures, characters, landscapes and machinery. Certain motifs are frequently found in his dense and tightly drawn fantasies include arches, boat hulls, mermaids, spiney blots, which have mutated into spiney people and armour. Using a fine architect’s rotring pen his mesmerising flights of fancy show a fantastical imagination coupled with extraordinary detail and technical ability, a master draughtsman for Master Drawings.

Winthrop currently spends most days working from his Ramsgate Studio, constructing his own personal universe through his constantly developing imagery. At night he plays his saxophone in a variety of contexts and continents.