Ventura Breeze article

WĀV Artist Interviews: Colin Fraser Gray

by Tim Pompey

Colin Fraser GrayColin Fraser Gray grew up in Paignton, a small town in southwest England. Drawing from an early age, he thought he might study to become an architect. Then he met Rembrandt (in a book) and something happened. “Seeing his drawing of a young girl made me decide to go to art school and take this on,” he says. “It touched my teenage romantic young guy.”

When he went to art school, first at Torquay and then Leeds, he discovered something else—the company of other artists. “It was a relief to find like-minded people,” he says. “When I got to art school, it was like coming home.”

But beyond his traditional studies, Gray yearned for something more creative. “One day I asked myself the question: What would I rescue if my studio was burning down? And the answer came back: nothing. Gray discovered his true artistic calling when he worked on something quite basic: tools. Wavy tools like saws, shovels, and ladders. “I started making practical tools and they all came out weird. I realized I had discovered my own voice.”

Since then he has explored all sorts of industrial shapes—from wheels to architecture. Gray believes it takes a variety of interests to make creative art. “I see it like the roots of a tree,” he says. “I see the roots as my interests. Then they amalgamate in the trunk and the art is the fruit.”

For Gray, his goal is to create art that doesn’t exist—yet. “I envision things I want to see and can’t see them out in the world anywhere. If I saw them out in the world, I’d go see them. If they don’t exist, then I guess I have to go make them.”

For more information on Gray’s work, view his website at

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