Bohuslav Barlow


Bohuslav Barlow

Bohuslav Barlow was born as Bohuslav Klos in Bruntal, a small peasant township in Upper Moravia, Czechoslovakia, in 1947.

At 8 years old, Bohuslav was summoned to England to his mother and stepfather (from whom he took the surname Barlow) in Blackpool. Understandably, it took time to adjust and settle in England; which was made worse by the suspicion in which people from Germany were regarded so soon after the end of WWII. But it was during Bohuslav's early years in England that he began to express himself through art. His first picture was a view of the famous Blackpool Tower. He then progressed to copying film posters and gradually moved onto better things; which were often linked to an imaginary world that he told his step siblings stories about. The discovery of his profession as an artist was slow and torturous; due to his family's extreme poverty, Bohuslav's early pictures were done in pencil and coloured crayons on cheap paper.

When he reached Manchester School of Art it gave him the opportunity to use oil paints for the first time. From here, he then went onto the Central School of Art in London in the grip of hard edge abstractionism; which was contrary to his own instincts. He taught for one term in London and from then on decided to live as a full time professional artist which he has done ever since.

While still living in London, Bohuslav travelled to Blackburn and by chance passed through Todmorden on his way. He was stuck by the wild, romantic scenery and felt that this was what he wanted to paint. And from this decision he moved to Todmorden at the age of 26; and then started to produce the work which has lead him to his imagery today. Bohuslav today still lives in Todmorden with his wife and two children. He finally found a place that felt like home.