Tuesday, January 26, 2010
Little Monet - Kieron Williamson
He is being talked about in the same breath as Picasso, his artwork is making its way around the world including to Europe and the Far East and adults have been reduced to tears by the quality of his painting.
But nothing prepared a Norfolk gallery for the unprecedented speed at which a seven-year-old child prodigy's 16 new paintings sold this morning.
In a hectic 14 minutes, all of Kieron Williamson's paintings sold either to keen buyers at Picturecraft's gallery and exhibition centre in Holt or over the phone to distant collectors - as far away as China and Germany.
Art experts have already been discussing the investment potential of the Holt youngster's work and today's sales may support this theory.
The works, landscapes of iconic Norfolk locations such as Morston, Blakeney, Cley, Holkham and Brancaster and featuring sunsets, boats, snow scenes and churches, were all priced around the £1,000 mark and supposed to feature in a month long exhibition of mixed artists, starting at 9am.
But several have already been taken off the walls and depending on when buyers want to collect their purchases, there may be little of young Kieron's work to see once the exhibition comes to a close.
The young man's take on proceedings was straight forward: “It's absolutely excellent.”
For Adrian Hill, who owns Picturecraft with his father Michael, it was a staggering morning.
“It was over before it started. I have had fabulous sell out shows before, but never in that space of time, it was absolute bedlam.
“Kieron is now simply one of the most coveted British artists out there, he is red hot.
“I believe the last child artist in this bracket was Picasso. And Kieron is getting better and better and better, the pace at which he learns is quite amazing. He has mastered certain techniques which some artists would take years to perfect.”
The key to Kieron's success was his skill with light and dark, colour and tone, which allowed him to put so much life into the paintings, said Mr Hill, and demonstrated a “very mature hand”.
Those skills had brought some customers to tears, added Mr Hill.
And in a measure of how the youngster had kept his feet on the ground despite his success, Mr Hill added: “Kieron's first thought was 'did everyone like them?”.
For mum Michelle, arriving at Picturecraft at around 9.15am meant she had missed the full adrenaline fuelled excitement - although the resulting exhilaration will last for some time to come.
“When I arrived it was all over!
“Of course we are all absolutely thrilled. We are so pleased for Kieron, because obviously other people's opinion about the paintings matters a lot.”
Another show might be held in August, said Mrs Williamson, although that depended on how much work Kieron produced, a decision which would rest with him and no one else.
But he remained keen to paint, she added, especially now that a large chunk of his work had been sold.