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Sax Impey works from no.8 Porthmeor Studios, part of a historic studio complex overlooking Porthmeor beach in St Ives, Cornwall. Remarkably apt considering that, since 2005, he has produced work derived almost exclusively from experiences at sea. A qualified RYA Yachtmaster he has sailed many thousands of nautical miles delivering yachts around the world. These extensive trips have had a profound impact on his life and subsequent development as an artist. Reconnecting to nature through this powerful element has the almost inescapable effect of calling to question some of life’s existential questions. This epiphanic moment of realisation, of revelation, is at the core of Impey’s oeuvre.
Reflecting on and capturing personal moments and making them universal, Impey’s work reaffirms the importance of introspection and confrontation, found specifically when surrounded by the natural world;
“A mind can breathe, and observe, and reflect, away from the shrill desperation of a culture that, having forgotten that it is better to say nothing than something about nothing, invents ever new ways to fill every single space with less and less.”
After graduating, Impey spent time in East Africa where he participated in film, theatre and performance projects before returning to Cornwall to paint. In 1995 he was elected a member of the Newlyn Society of Artists and in 1997 was awarded a 'Kunstbrucke' residency in Berlin. In 2005, he collaborated with the cross-cultural, environmental art group Red Earth in the creation of site-specific installations in Trafalgar Square, London, and at Birling Gap in Sussex.
In 2007 Impey's work was selected for the ‘Art Now Cornwall’ exhibition at the Tate St Ives where he was placed on the cover of the associated publication. The same year he was heralded in The Times as one of the ‘New Faces of Cornish Art’. In 2010 Sax was featured in Owen Sheers's BBC4 Documentary ‘Art of the Sea (In Pictures)’ alongside Anish Kapoor, J. M. W. Turner, Martin Parr and Maggi Hambling among others. His work was selected as a finalist the 2013 Threadneedle Prize and the year before was elected an Academician at the Royal West of England Academy.
His paintings are in numerous collections including The Arts Council, Warwick University, the Connaught Hotel and the collections of Roman Abramovich and Lady Victoria Getty alongside other private collections worldwide.