Oil on Board Artist
In 1972, his father, John Durkin, stole and held ransom a Lowry painting of Middlesbrough Town Hall. In exchange for the painting’s safe return, he demanded galleries opened on Sundays “to allow the working man to get some culture”. Sean did not realise it at the time, but the painting would have a profound effect on his life, and ultimately inspire him to become an artist himself.
Today, Sean’s atmospheric work pays tribute to the memory of that stolen painting. His paintings are full of narrative, prompting the viewer to wonder about the lives of the ‘matchstick’ people within. Sean himself adds to this narrative by including a burglar and a policeman in every painting as a reminder of his father’s sensational stunt.