Oliver Needs has been painting from a young age. It is a way of expressing himself.
Oliver Needs' had an art scholarship to City of London School Sixth Form and later chose to study a Business Language course but continued to draw in his spare time and later chose to follow his heart and take an Art Foundation Course at Chelsea School of Art in 2000. Here he was able to try a variety of practices but later chose to move towards drawing and painting and took a BA Fine Art at East London University
Oliver Needs tries to look inside himself to express an experience or thoughts he has had and is also very interested in the everyday world we live in. He expresses this with a variety of colours this often including symbols, figures and words of particular importance to him at that moment. He is exploring and hopes his art helps others to take a moment to explore themselves and the world around us.
London is an inspirational city, for Oliver Needs with such a variety of cultures and people to meet and learn from. Music is inspiring for him too with its raw energy and passion.
He has a strong interest in psychology. Consciousness and unconsciousness. He enjoys looking at Native American symbols and also Mandalas. Interestingly the psychoanalyst Carl Jung saw the mandala as a "representation of the unconscious self" and believed that by painting in this way one could work towards identifying emotional disorders and therefore work towards wholeness in personality.
It is also said that a mandala is a term used for any plan which represents the cosmos metaphysically or symbolically, a microcosm of the universe from the human perspective. This is very relevant to Needs' work, just as Anthony Gormley has talked out about the influences of his travels in Asia and Buddhism in his work.
Ultimately Oliver Needs is an artist who draws and paints. Sketching and noting ideas which usually end up as a painting, often beginning in acrylic paint and completed with layers of oil paint.
2003 Bayswater Road Artists, Bayswater / Hyde Park.
2004 University of East London
2004 Candid Arts Trust, Islington.
2006 The Drayton Arms Bar, Drayton Gdns. London.
2007 European School of Economics Restaurant, Grovesnor Place, London.
2011 June – Open Studios – Artists at Home – W4/W12