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Press Release - Riviera’s Hidden Contemporary Talent Whose Work is Internationally Collectible

Visitors to Fleet Walk’s Artizan Collective Gallery during September who ventured into their basement, may have discovered one of Torbay’s best kept artistic secrets.

Hidden downstairs in an industrial looking workshop room, is the studio of emerging English Riviera artist William Mills, a young talent whose bold and expressive abstract style is capturing the attention of global collectors.

The Torbay artist has been hosted by Artizan for a little over a year now; his largest artworks coming in at more than 6 foot tall require a big space to work on, and the expansive former stock room is the perfect setting.

‘My work is bold, expressive, and atmospheric, capturing something simultaneously fluent and graceful, yet towering, turbulent and contemplative.’

William Mills

Painting professionally for approaching three years, his rapid rise to international notability was first achieved in his locality. In 2020 he was awarded the New Elizabeth Bovill Trophy for works entered into the Torbay Guild of Artists annual showcase, judged by another of Devon’s most successful contemporary talents, artist F. G. Davis. In the same year, he later received the Joanna Radford Prize from Devon Artist Network, a prestigious marker that has often predicted the success of upcoming artists from the region.

This local recognition means that you may very likely now stumble across commissions from Mills’ adorning homes across Devon. But for every piece that is to be found between the coasts of the South West, there is at least one sibling on another continent, as international collectors have discovered his emerging work.

Now, following a successful Devon Open Studios, William is showcasing a new series of paintings that visitors to the event in September will have perhaps seen him embarking upon.

As well as featuring some of the towering evocative paintings that have typified his practice, for the first time he will also be exhibiting a collection of smaller studies that compliment these statement pieces. These scaled down works offer a new exploration of the multi-layered experience Mills’ looks to create; paintings that can be viewed as seascapes, skyscapes, or a world in between, are now revealed through a macro and micro lens.

‘I want viewers to be able to scour every detail of the canvas and never find any evidence of tools, brushwork or any form of deliberate human manipulation. It's an exhaustingly time-consuming process, slowly covering my tracks with layers upon layers of paint, but the reward when every inch of the painting has something interesting to say makes it so infinitely worth it.’

The exhibition runs from 19th – 31st October at the Artizan Collective Gallery, Fleet Walk. There will be an artist preview on 21st October from 18:30 – 20:30, reservations for which can be made at For more information on the exhibition, visit



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