Born in Oldham, Lancashire to Edward and Sarah he was an only child, but a very gifted one. He soon demonstrated talent in music and art and Gordon attained grade 8 in music through a love for the piano. His father Edward died suddenly at a young age and during this period Gordon's leaning to art won over from music. Attending the Oldham School of Art he discovered his love for painting in oils. Any dreams however, of becoming a professional artist did not materialise, he was to work in engineering in a variety of employment. Lunchtimes and breaks were a chance to sketch work colleagues and machinery, capturing scenes in charcoal or pencil graphite.
Gordon later joined the Oldham Art Society and continued to be a member for much of his lifetime, whereby the majority of works were life studies. These group meetings were an opportunity to diversify from much of his early works. These would often portray scenes from industrial Manchester and Lancashire capturing the once industrial majesty of the latter. In 1972 he entered and won the International Artist Magazine competition and three years later became a member of the Manchester Academy of Fine Arts. Continuing to develop his style over the next decade, his main influences were John Singer Sargent and Edward Seago. A style developed which displayed great sensitivity and he had an eye for capturing vivid colours and play of sunlight.
Demand for Gordon's work increased and he exhibited throughout the Country from Oban to the Isle of Wight. Galleries included Messums and The Mall Gallery in London, together with the Royal Society of Painters in Oils. Collections of his artwork are in a number of public galleries, in addition to private collections, including Sir Ian McKellen.
Early retirement at 56 was a great boost to the diversity of his work, a love for travelling expanded his portfolio and diverse themes. Gordon made repeated visits to Venice, together with The Greek Islands and France. It was Venice that captured Gordon's heart, here he painted not only the main scenes, such as the Grand Canal and it's many squares, but everyday scenes including beautifully captured cafe culture of the City. So it was a new richer pallette of colour which emerged. Mediterranean views, cityscapes, architectural subjects, lavish interiors and seashore were all captured in vibrant colour.
Commissions and demand continued, but he also found time to paint for himself, his most recent paintings found pub scenes of great joy and some humour in the titles. Again these works were soon in great demand.
Constantly searching for new ideas and inspiration, it was in Gozo in September 2015 that Gordon died suddenly at the age of 78.
To have known a man of such talent is a privilege and to own a painting by Gordon is also a singular honour, who was one of the great Northern Artists.This site is the testimony to him and the diversity of subjects he covered, a celebration of the works of Gordon Radford - an artist's artist.