Stephen Mangan

Mangan’s figurative work is particularly distinctive, with an otherworldly feel. Favourite themes include race courses, train stations, beaches, harbours, fairgrounds, cafes and theatres, where the busy scenes are almost eerily calm, with each figure engaged in their individual, quiet contemplation.


Mangan said ‘I’m interested in the relationship between people in certain leisure environments;  how they, or we, fit into the world. I seem to be drawn to people in group situations, yet I paint them as separate individuals who do not look as though they are with other people. It’s an odd type of interaction’ 


Mangan’s style is methodical, with careful consideration given to composition. Razor sharp lines, as seen in boat masts, racing posts, beach huts and horizons, create a pleasing geometry to guide the eye and provide balance to the roundness of the main figures - for example, the boats , horses and people. Mangan’s use of chiaroscuro (light/shade) technique emphasises the atmospheric feeling in his work. He said ‘It’s a slow process, where the paintings are carefully planned, built up thinly and glazed often. I use light to create depth, shadows and contrasts’. This technique echoes the geometric elements, for example, in light coming through a window or in shadows cast diagonally across a scene. Mangan’s transcendent  work is considered highly collectable and is held in many private and public collections globally, including in the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York


COLLECTIONS                                                              AWARDS AND SCHOLARSHIPS

Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York                     Dalgetty Dunn Award for Painting 1988

Midlothian NHS Trust, Edinburgh                               Miller Homes Paris Scholarship 1989

Munich Reinsurance Company, London                     John Murray Thomson Award, RSA 1996

Prudential Corporation, London                                  The Guthrie Award, RSA 1997

Royal Scottish Academy (RSA), Edinburgh                  Saltire Society Purchase Award, RSA 1998

Walter Scott, Edinburgh                                                 City Sites Estates Art Award, Royal Glasgow

Watson Phillips, Dundee                                                 Institute of the Fine Arts (RGI) 2007