William Fairbank studied Sculpture at Ravensbourne College of Art, and was taught by the eminent cabinet-maker and designer, David Jesse Jones. William ran his own carpentry and joinery business for many years and became experienced in woodcarving and veneering.
The sculptor was involved in a car accident in 1987 in which he received a serious brain injury. As part of a course in occupational therapy, he started work on the first station of the cross. Not born of any of the usual motives for making such monumental works – not commissioned, not fired by zeal or doctrine – he set out to find himself through working in wood. The fact that the stations are a practised sequence meant that he could concentrate on developing and communicating ideas as each station led to the next.
There followed seven years of work, leading to fifteen sculptures comprising The Forest Stations. The Forest Stations surpass any of his previous work. Exhibitions of the Forest Stations led to Commissions including The Heart of Yew, Ribbon of Life for New Malden Methodist Church and the Dove. He built the three Time Line sculptures to enter for the Turner Prize 2000 fine art competition. For some years William explored the medium of film making related to dealing with head injury through art.
He is currently living in Norfolk with his wife, Catherine, and enjoying developing his skills and experience in stained glass work. His most recent carving in wood, ‘Prayer Ascending’, was completed in 2017 and is displayed in East Harling Parish Church.
You can write to William at:
24 The Baliwick,
Norfolk, NR16 2NF
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