John Aiken

Sculptural artist John Aiken was born in Belfast in 1950

John Aiken was born in Belfast in 1950, and studied at the Chelsea School of Art, London, from 1968-73. Aiken has been awarded many commissions, including a 40 metre frieze in Belfast City Hospital, a steel sculpture for the Arts Council of Northern Ireland, and a sculpture for St Anne’s Park, Belfast. He is currently Slade Professor/Director at the Slade School of Fine Art, London.

Aiken's work is largely informed by the aesthetic deployment of geometry and the application of rational processes. Between 1975 and 1983, the artist constructed a series of works using mostly sand, but also steel and wood.

They were exhibited in Ireland, Britain, and abroad, and were influenced by the way man leaves his mark, whether close to the surface, as in grid overlays or archaeological sites, or raised from the surface, as in city fortifications or defensive bunkers. Aiken’s stated concerns are largely aesthetic, but can easily reflect the development of cities, the accretions of growth, and the networking of societies.