British abstract painter, born in Sheffield. He studied at Sheffield College of Art, 1951–6, and the *Royal Academy Schools, 1956–60. Early influences were the painting of Nicolas de *Stäel and the teaching of Victor *Pasmore. He took part in the *‘Situation’ exhibition of abstract painting in 1960. His paintings at this point used bands of colour which suggested a kind of buckling of the picture plane, but by the time of his appearance in the *‘New Generation’ exhibition in 1964 he was painting unequivocally flat works with the paint soaked into the canvas in a manner reminiscent of the *Colour Field painters: simple intensely coloured forms floated against a colour field (14.
6.64, 1964, Manchester Art Gallery). Following the exhibition, he was awarded a bursary which enabled him to travel to New York, where he met Helen *Frankenthaler, Kenneth *Noland, and Clement *Greenberg. He also discovered the paintings of Hans *Hofmann; under his influence he employed thick layers of brilliantly coloured pigment. What was consistent in Hoyland's painting was its scale and its preoccupation with colour. ‘The shapes and colours I paint and the significance I attach to them I cannot explain in any coherent way. The exploration of colour, mass, shape is, I believe, a self-exploration constantly varied and changing in nature: a reality made tangible on the painted surface.’ He also made screenprints and etchings. Further Reading M. Gooding, John Hoyland (2006)
Text Source: The Oxford Dictionary of Art and Artists (Oxford University Press)