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Noah takes time out for a doodle

Daily Telelgraph January 28 2013

Elizabeth Fortescue

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"I think everyone has their own doodling style," says Taylor, a prominent actor ever since his appearance in the 1987 hit film, The Year My Voice Broke.

He is referring to that automatic writing of symbols that people indulge in when they're "on the phone and talking about whatever to an accountant or something". He has found his personal symbols have tended towards the figurative.

He draws hills and simplified people, forming the basis for ink and pastel drawings.

"I tend to work really fast and splatter the ink around," he says.

"If you keep that speed up then the conscious brain isn't over-working.

"I usually start with the shape of a head and then stick the eyes in but without a lot of thought. Where you place a dot within a circle gives you the mood or persona of that person, and that informs the rest of the painting, in a way.

"I try to let the characters dictate things."

Taylor describes the works as "snapshots" or "frozen scenes". He leaves them untitled to enhance their ambiguity and open them up to the viewer's interpretation.

"I find people will read them very differently," he says.

While Taylor has been in numerous group exhibitions in the UK, this is his first solo exhibition anywhere.

It came about when he was introduced to Tim Olsen by their mutual friend, actress Claudia Karvan.

Taylor says he has always made art but the chance to act came along when he was very young and diverted him.

"Had I not gone into (acting) so young, I would have gone more into music or art and creating things of my own devising," he says.

"But if you are known in one thing you are almost a little bit embarrassed to pursue other things because generally people don't like that."

Taylor grew up in Melbourne and now lives in the UK seaside town of Brighton.

He is soon off to the sub-zero climes of Georgia in the former Soviet Union, where he will act in a comedy film.

Taylor says he is influenced by the Surrealists and their ideas about what they called automatic writing.

He is also interested in the Situationist movement whose followers insisted that art had to make a political statement.

Taylor's works on view at Tim Olsen Gallery have clear political and social references, from weapons and churches to women wearing burqas.
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