This week’s Designer Desire feature is of Londoner, Ron Hitchins (b 1926). He’s had a very diverse and colourful life; as well as producing magnificent, sculptural artworks, he’s been a tailor and British pioneer of Spanish dance. He initiated the Ron Hitchins Dance Bursary and is known in Flamenco dance circles as “El Chino”.
His work – when you come across it – is surprisingly affordable. You can get hold of one of his wall sculptures for less than £100 at auction.
He’s been the subject of a couple of photographers’ projects – here’s what one said about him:
Ron is such an interesting character. In the 1930s, shirts all used to be either cream, white or grey, but Ron used to make his own shirts, similar to ones he is wearing in the photographs. These shirts had very loud patterns and were hugely outrageous in amongst the fashion of the time. Later he explained that a lot of his patterns were stolen and mimicked and he was left behind in this world. However, he still maintained the nickname “The Flash” by his friends due to this love of bright colour and pattern. Later he focussed more on fine art. All the art in the background, including the doors and ceramics were created by him.
Below is a fabulous interview with Hitchins where he doesn’t talk about his art, only his early working life and dancing. Nevertheless, it’s a really interesting watch & listen, and you get a few glimpses of his art on the walls!
Additional image credits: