INDEPENDENT AWARD WINNING GALLERY

Bob Barker Has The Best of Times at Leeds City Museum Northern Light Exhibition

Bob Barker’s new painting, direct from his recent exhibition at Leeds City Museum, Northern Light, celebrates at least one star player’s glory days.
The Northern Light exhibition represents a lifetime of observations channelled into a collection which has been more than 12 months in the making.   Barker is an acclaimed artist and is famed for his Northern Light impression. Working with a limited colour palette he skilfully masters the creation of mood by drawing the viewer in to another moment in time.   “When I paint it’s almost – at least through my eyes – as if this northern light pours from my brush onto the canvas.”

One piece in particular was quintessential Bob Barker – Best of Times includes all the elements that art lovers admire in the work of one of the North’s favourite artists.


There’s the sporting hero, depicted as artwork within artwork in a mural on an end-terrace wall. The young fan mimics his hero’s pose as he practices his skills, watched by a reclining girl. There’s the element of mystery – is he showing off to her, his very own fan; or so lost in his own dream world of footballing glory that he’s not even aware of her presence? Is she admiring him, or the glamorous sporting star on the wall behind him?

And the whole thing is lit by Bob Barker’s trademark nostalgic glow – both figuratively, in those splashes of orange from the street lamp and the narrow windows, and metaphorically: Best of Times recalls all our childhoods, when kids still played out on the streets before tea, and budding romances were played out amid the warmth of the lamp-lit cobbles.


Bob Barker is one of the Artmarket Gallery’s best-loved artists; his work is collected worldwide, but his subject matter is largely the north of England. He’s renowned for his sensitive and nostalgic depictions of light and colour, and sees both where others may see only soot-blackened stone and polluted skies. His importance as a northern artist was enhanced by his recent exhibition at Leeds City Museum, Northern Light.


Sport is one of the recurring themes of Bob’s art, never more celebratory than in this stunning depiction of George Best, playing in his heyday in the iconic red shirt of Manchester United.

Best of Times is a framed original oil on canvas, and came to the Artmarket Gallery direct from the Northern Light exhibition at Leeds City Museum.

Image size: 70 × 89cm
Framed size: 89 × 109cm
Signed by Bob Barker in the bottom left-hand corner
Title hand written on the reverse by Bob Barker in black Sharpie
Priced at £5950

A recent painting by Bob was commissioned by The Artmarket Gallery, Table for two, depicting a couple arriving for dinner at the Pipe and Glass Inn in South Dalton near Beverley on a rainy, moonlit evening, sold out in a limited edition print of just 54 signed by both Bob and Pipe and Glass chef/owner James Mackenzie. Northern Light can be seen at the Artmarket Gallery, 197 Hallgate, Cottingham, East Yorkshire, HU16 4BB from 27 August to 10 September 2016; entry is free of charge.

The Artmarket Gallery is open from 9.30am to 5.30pm on weekdays, and 10am to 4pm on Saturdays.