Belfast views

Colin Davidson Towards Cave Hill From Botanic, Belfast 2022 (detail) oil on linen 114 x 152cm


Highly acclaimed for his portraiture work, Colin Davidson’s images are particularly evocative when they depict the familiar features of Belfast, writes Riann Coulter

Over the last decade, Colin Davidson has gained international renown for his large-scale portraits of actors, musicians, writers and politicians. However, while portraiture is the most visible manifestation of Davidson’s practice, it is only one element of a multifaceted oeuvre, the result of an artist continually striving to challenge himself and explore new territory. This curiosity has produced nudes, still lives, landscapes and, recently, explorations in three dimensions. Until 2010, Davidson was best known for urban scenes, initially atmospheric views of Belfast and later complex renderings of city life reflected in the glazed surfaces of office buildings. From a derelict house, painted when the artist was a teenager, to his first large portrait, an image of local musician Duke Special, Davidson’s current exhibition traces his artistic journey and situates the portraits within the context of his wider practice.

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