Meet the artist
Ian Phillips McLaren took up photography in 1985, buying a second-hand camera to embark on a photography course. He shared studio space in the Glasgow artists’ co-operative, WASPS and his career began. In 1989 he was the subject of a BBC TV film A Style of One’s Own which led to becoming Artist in Residence at the Glasgow School of Art, teaching photography and darkroom techniques. He exhibited his art and life in Glasgow as part of the City of Culture in 1990.
In the early 1990s Ian produced his first album cover, followed by a series of portraits for American Vogue. In 1992 he moved to London and became best known for portraiture of artists and celebrities including the Spice Girls, Justin Timberlake, Billy Connolly, Orlando Bloom and many others.
In the Mist (2016) marked the beginning of new work in Hatfield Forest followed by still life studies, working and experimenting with alternative and early print processes.
Ian's portrait of Gwen (his mother-in-law) featured in the Squaring the Circles exhibition is an intimate study on the effects of dementia on a once strong, sharp woman, where softening memories have started to disintegrate, often hidden in layers within layers, where time is becoming increasingly meaningless and fragmented.