David Barker (b.1945)

Opera House


45.4cm x 65.5cm

From the collection of the Belfast Print Workshop


David Barker is an artist who specialises in printmaking, he works in a variety of mediums including etching, engraving and silk screen prints. His work is strongly influenced by the symbolic languages of Chinese art. He completed his undergraduate degree in Fine Art at the University of London in 1967, receiving his postgraduate degree there a year later. He also studied Chinese at Goldsmiths’ College, London in the 1960s, and at The People’s University of China, Beijing and Leeds University during the 1980s.

For many years he was the Senior Lecturer in Fine and Applied Art at the School of Art and Design in Belfast. He retired from the University of Ulster as Emeritus Reader in Printmaking in 2005, having taught there since 1968. Barker is an Honorary Professor in the China National Academy of Fine Arts in Hangzhou and in the Lu Xun Academy of Fine Arts in Shenyang and a Fellow of the Royal Society of Painter-Printmakers.

His research interest is in the history and technology of Chinese printmaking, he has contributed to a number of books on this subject, and, in 2005, published his own volume Traditional Techniques in Contemporary Chinese Printmaking. He is a regular contributor to the journal Printmaking Today. This screenprint from the collection of the Belfast Print Workshop is less typical of Barker’s style, but speaks to his many years working in the city as it depicts one of Belfast’s most iconic buildings, the Grand Opera House.