REAY, John

1947 - 2011

John Reay

John David Reay was born in London on 2 October 1947, son of Thomas Michael Reay (27 September 1911-19 October 1973) and his wife Rose née Edwards, who married at Edmonton, London in 1947. In 1967, at the age of 19, he married 18-year-old Kathie Habgood, when he began to pursue his love of art, studying at Brighton School of Art 1969-1970 and at Norwich School of Art 1970-1973. In 1974 the Reay's settled at Lowestoft, Suffolk where John taught art at The Denes High School, followed by teaching posts at the Benjamin Britten High School and Lowestoft College, also giving private tuition. After thirty years studying and painting the Norfolk and Suffolk coastal environment, the human figure became a major part of his work in beach scenes, for which he became especially known. His work has alternated between small landscapes painted on location and larger studio compositions of single figures and groups of figures assembled on the seashore. A member and exhibitor at the Beccles Society of Artists 1977-1990. Amongst his many solo exhibitions were at the Alwin Gallery, London; Bohun Gallery, Henley; Beldesign, Cambridge; Bury St Edmund's Art Centre; Phoenix Art Gallery, Lavenham; Piccadilly Gallery, London; Crane Kalman Gallery, London; Chappel Galleries, Essex and Aberbach Fine Art, London. His marriage to Kathie Habgood was dissolved in 1993, they had two sons, one of whom survived him and was living at Orkney with his wife and children. John David Reay died at Gorleston, Norfolk on 28 January 2011, leaving a partner Susan Key. Doncaster Museum and Art Gallery, British Petroleum, Suffolk County Libraries and Worlingworth church in Suffolk are among public and corporate collections holding Reay's work, which was also bought by private collectors on several continents.

Works by This Artist