Phil Ashcroft

“Phil Ashcroft’s specific form of gestural, emotive abstraction combines flattened out 1980s style art deco and graffiti influences with references to American abstraction which often threaten to overwhelm the upper sections of his canvases. But it is an overtly Post-Modern type of abstraction, one that appears to forefronts process and gesture but is in fact computer generated translations of gestural painting reproduced as painting.

In other paintings, the work is entirely abstract but it is as if he has cropped or zoomed into the image, suggesting digital manipulations re-presenting or editing Modernist formats. This is further reinforced by the references to vector graphics and geometrical primitives in Ashcroft’s work, graphics based on mathematical expressions which are used to communicate non-subjective, procedural routes into abstraction at odds with the historical overtly-subjective precedents of Abstract Expressionism.”

– Paul Hobson, Director, Modern Art Oxford (from Phil Ashcroft: Solar System Parameters, 2013)

“At first sight, Ashcroft’s lightboxes seem to represent a utopia of modern structures. It is only at closer inspection that we realise that there are hints at some unspecified catastrophe in his desolate urban landscape images, empty of human existence.”
– The Permanent Collection, New Art Gallery Walsall


Phil Ashcroft lives and works in London. He studied at Harrow College of Art and Design London (1989-92) and St Martins School of Art London (1992-94).

Solo exhibitions include Cave Paintings, Lewisham Arthouse, London 2015; Galácticos, Gamma Transport Division, Edinburgh 2013; Toxicity, Margaret Harvey Gallery, UH Galleries, St Albans 2006; Yeti In Hong Kong, EXIT, Hong Kong 2005 and Nitro Deluxe, Deptford X, London 2001. Group exhibitions include Intervention Intervention, Fishmarket Gallery, Northampton 2011; No Soul for Sale, Tate Modern, London 2010; Deptford X, London 2009; The Golden Record, The Collective Gallery, Edinburgh 2008.

Ashcroft was a finalist in the John Moores Painting Prize 2014, Walker Art Gallery, Liverpool; the Celeste Art Prize 2007 and selected for Contemporary Art Society’s ARTfutures 2005 and 2007, Bloomberg SPACE, London. His work is held in The New Art Gallery Walsall’s Permanant Collection and in private collections worldwide. Commissions include work for Aedas Architects, Amnesty International (UK), British Film Institute, muf architecture, The Royal Mail, Sony and Yahoo (UK).


Solar System Parameters, limited edition monograph published by Gamma Proforma in 2014