Thurible in the Sacristy, Lincoln Cathedral
18.75 x 12.5 inches
The Mall Galleries, 2015, no. 387
' made this drawing in Lincoln Cathedral during my residency there', Toby Ward tells us. 'I was fascinated by the thurible, a wonderful object that I had only seen before in films. In the background is the Precentor' chasuble ready for him to put on prior to a service. The hanging chain was a particular challenge'.
Toby Ward, the son of John Ward, has been artist-in- residence at St Martin-in-the-Fields, the Mercers’ Company and the Athenaeum and has travelled as a recording artist with the Prince of Wales. After serving for six years in the army, Ward studied at City and Guilds of London Art School where he won the Richard Ford Travel Award to study in Madrid. In 1995 he spent a month working with the United Nations Peacekeeping force in central Bosnia, making a record in drawings of the life and work of the soldiers. During the ‘90s he made a series of drawings in two volumes for the National Trust recording the conservation of Chastleton House in the Cotswolds. This led to a commission to make drawings and watercolours of the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, before and during its redevelopment in the late ‘90s. The Ritz Hotel commissioned a series of paintings of all aspects of life at the hotel from the kitchens to the gymnasium, which now decorate the lifts in the hotel, and he has worked at St Martin-in- the-Fields, Lincoln Cathedral, covered the restoration work at Westminster Abbey and is booked to cover the work to be done at the Palace of Westminster. Ward has also made drawings of well known visitors to the UK, including President Clinton’s visit to Oxford University in 2001 and Archbishop Desmond Tutu preaching in London.
Since leaving art school Toby has constantly painted and drawn portraits. Among a number of significant commissions have been portraits of the Duke of Edinburgh, Lord Rothermere and Sir Sidney Kentridge. In 2005 he painted the portraits of two soldiers in southern Iraq for the Royal Welch Fusiliers.
Alongside Toby’s commissioned paintings there is a body of exhibition work in which he uses many of the same skills for drawing and painting people and places, but in a less naturalistic manner. These are pictures that tell a story or describe a scene that has interested or amused him. These works have been shown in popular exhibitions at the Arndean Gallery, the Catto Gallery and Avery Contemporary Art.