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Neil Bousfield

Lecturer, Illustration

With degrees in Animation (BA-Honours), Graphical Computing Technologies (MSc) and Printmaking (MA) Neil has a wide, varied background within industry and personal practice. Neil worked as full-time lecturer and now as fractional lecturer on the BA illustration course where he has taught for over 10 years. He maintains a personal art practice, exhibiting internationally and  work held in public collections. Neil pursues his research in drawing and relief printmaking and the construct of place and home.

I created a home on the Norfolk coast, a territory in dispute with water and the sea. My practice explores the role of memory, narrative and the environmental and geological narratives which help us build a sense of place, community and belonging.

Where we live and who we are is inextricably bound to and encompassed within the notion of home and place and the concepts of place identity and place attachment. Undifferentiated space becomes place as we endow it with value through the process of experience, memory, history and dwelling. To dwell in a place is to build, it is to invest, to create and make and the deepest sense of place is home, an intense feeling of place.

The implications of understanding attachment to home, place and the value of landscape has an impression upon many disciplines as well as a wider social impact. It is imperative to consider these multi-disciplinary contexts in terms of landscape value and coastal communities when considering geological and environmental narratives where the relationship between land and sea and of home and water are set against ever rising sea levels. This objective informs the work I make in response to the place I live.

Neil’s work is available to view on his website and on his blog.

Research and Practice

  • 2020: Mapping the Broads, Community and Creativity – group exhibition of works showcasing a selection of work made in response to the landscape and working with the communities that live in the area. Collaborative project: Water, Mills and Marshes
  • 2019: Like the Sea I Think – Collaborative, creative writing project and published book edited by Dr Sarah Lowndes
  • 2018: AUTUMN – production of a limited-edition relief printed engraving for boxed set produced by members of the Society of Wood Engravers
  • 2018: TERRITORY – production of a limited-edition engraving ‘Cable Route’ for boxed set TERRITORY, print portfolio project, Norwich University of the Arts
  • 2017: BALLOT – production of a limited-edition engraving ‘What Hope For Holding Back the Sea’ for boxed set BALLOT, print portfolio project, Norwich University of the Arts, in collaboration with Crawford College of Art & Design, Cork. FIRST EDITION Print Symposium on Friday 23 & Saturday 24 June 2017. A collaborative print project at Norwich University of the Arts and the democratic exchange of ideas through editioned prints.
  • 2016: WINTER – production of a limited-edition relief printed engraving ‘Cold Cold Sea: 15-20 Minutes’ for boxed set of original engravings produced by members of the Society of Wood Engravers, October 2016


  • 2020: 2020 Vision – original engraving commissioned in 2019 for a hand bound, letterpress printed book, published 2020, for the Society of Wood Engravers centenary celebrations
  • 2020: Drawn to Nature: Gilbert White and the Artists, Pallant House Gallery – exhibition of commissioned engraving in response to Gilbert White’s The Natural History and Antiquities of Selborne
  • 2019: Dulwich College TSM 400 – original engraving for Dulwich College as part of their 400th celebrations
  • 2018: Wilfred Owen Selected Poems – original engravings to accompany a new publication of poems by Wilfred Owen, published by The Folio Society to mark and commemorate the centenary of Owen’s death and Armistice Day, November 2018
  • 2016: Edward Thomas Selected Poems – original engraving used as a book cover design, Faber Nature Poets series, published by Faber & Faber, London
  • 2011: Feet of Clay by poet Paul Muldoon – original engraving for the title page of a hand bound, limited-edition book, printed letterpress, published by Four Candles Press, Oxford

Conferences and Symposia

  • 2021: Conference: Geographies of Responsibility: Rethinking Boundaries and Borders in a Turbulent World. Art and Geography 2 & 3: Community Mappings: Making Histories and Landscapes Visible, CIG 2021, Conference of Irish Geographers, Trinity College, Dublin – virtual conference, 18-21 May 2021
  • 2020: Symposium: New Perspectives on the Rural: Landscape, Community and Creativity, Norwich University of the Arts in association with The Broads Authority, The Landscape Partnership and Heritage Lottery Fund, 16 December 2020
  • 2017: Conference: WOODPECKINGS Presenting new perspectives on Victorian prints, book illustration and word-image narratives – Archive, narrative and the Construct of Place, Stevenson Lecture Theatre, British Museum, London, 16 & 17 June 2017
  • 2016: Illustrated presentation: Cambridge Original Printmakers Biennale, Keynote speaker, 23-28 September 2016
  • 2016: Personal practice talk, Print Collector’s Club: Space, Place & Home, Bankside Gallery, London, 14 May 2016

Exhibitions (Selected)

  • 2021: Connections, The Scottish Gallery, Edinburgh
  • 2021: IMPRESSIONS: British Wood Engraving Today, Muban Educational Trust
  • 2021-2015: London Original Print Fair, Royal Academy of Arts, London
  • 2021 | 2020 | 2019 | 2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015 | 2014: RE Original Prints, Bankside Gallery, London
  • 2021-2006: Annual Exhibition, The Society of Wood Engravers, UK (touring)
  • 2020 | 2019 | 2018: Woolwich Contemporary Print Fair, Royal Arsenal
  • 2020: Royal Academy of Arts Summer Exhibition, London
  • 2020: Scene through Wood: A Century of Wood Engraving, Ashmolean Museum, Oxford
  • 2020: Drawn to Nature: Gilbert White and the Artists Pallant House Gallery, Chichester
  • 2020: Mapping the Broads, Community and Creativity, East Gallery, NUA
  • 2019 & 2015: The Masters: Relief, Bankside Gallery, London
  • 2019: Westmorland Landscape Prize Exhibition Rheged Centre Gallery, Penrith, Cumbria
  • 2019 | 2018 | 2017 | 2016 | 2015: National Original Print Exhibition Bankside Gallery, London
  • 2019: HIT 19, Haugesund Billedgalleri, Haugesund, Norway
  • 2018: 1st Biennial Sino-British Contemporary Art Exhibition, Yantai Art Museum, Shandong Province, China
  • 2018: RBSA Print Prize 2018, Royal Birmingham Society of Artists
  • 2018: The Art of Wood Engraving, Printroom, Suffolk
  • 2017-2018 & 2015-2016: New Light, Bowes Museum, Barnard Castle (touring)
  • 2017: Ink Miami, IFPDA, Miami, USA
  • 2017: 21st National Open Art, Bargehouse, Oxo Tower Wharf, London
  • 2017 | 2016 | 2014 (prizewinner): ING Discerning Eye, Mall Galleries, London
  • 2017: Ballot, Nunn’s Yard, Norwich
  • 2017: RWA 165th Annual, Royal West of England Academy, Bristol
  • 2017: Royal Society of British Artists 300th, Mall Galleries, London
  • 2016: The Art of the Print, Highpoint Center for Printmaking, Minneapolis, MN, USA
  • 2015: 19th National Open Art, Royal College of Art, London
  • 2015: Royal Society of Painter-Printmakers at Burton Art Gallery, Bideford, Devon
  • 2015: Hidden in Plain Sight, Norwich University of the Arts Gallery
  • 2014: 18th National Open Art, Somerset House, London
  • 2014: Neil Bousfield: Engravings, North House Gallery, solo show and first retrospective
  • 2013: Royal Academy of Arts Summer Exhibition 2013, London
  • 2012: The Best Tools, The Best Methods, The Best Aim: The Society of Wood Engravers 1920-2012, Manchester Metropolitan University
  • 2011: The Art of the Woodcut Novel, AVA Gallery and Art Center, USA and Lamson Library, Plymouth State University, USA (invited artist)
  • 2011: BITE 2011 Artists Making Prints, Mall Galleries, London (invited artist)
  • 2011: Bewick’s Legacy: 6 Contemporary Wood Engravers, Washington Printmakers Gallery, USA (invited artist)


  • 2018: ‘Highly Commended award’ Royal Birmingham Society of Artists, RBSA Print Prize
  • 2018: The Rachel Reckitt Prize (first prize), The Golsoncott Foundation
  • 2017: Printmakers Prize, New Light Art & Zillah Bell Gallery – solo show awarded
  • 2015: Flourish Print Award – ‘Highly Commended’ for excellence in printmaking
  • 2014: Regional Prizewinner, ING Discerning Eye, Mall Galleries, London
  • 2013: The Rachel Reckitt prize, The Golsoncott Foundation
  • 2012: SWE 75th Anniversary Prize
  • 2011: SWE award, BITE: Artists Making Prints, Mall Galleries, London – received for outstanding engraving ‘We Once Made Steel’
  • 2007: Rebecca Smith Award – received for illustrated narrative ‘The Cycle’, an artist’s book containing 200 engraved images, hand printed and hand bound for the first edition

Published Articles, profiles, books and catalogues

  • 2020: Desmet, A. and Brett, S. 2020. Scene Through Wood: A Century of Modern Wood Engraving, Ashmolean Museum, Oxford, 28 March-12 July. [Exhibition catalogue]. Oxford: Ashmolean Museum, University of Oxford
  • 2019: Lowndes, S. (2019). Like the Sea I Think, Cromer, UEA Publishing Project with Kunsthalle
  • 2018: Wilfred Owen Selected Poems, Illustrations completed by Neil Bousfield, published by The Folio Society, London, Autumn 2018
  • 2018: Printmakers in the Dalziel Archive, Article: Printmaking Today Vol. 27 No. 1 Spring 2018
  • 2015: Time and Tide Profile: Printmaking Today Vol.24 No.1 Spring 2015
  • 2011: Choice Cuts Article: Printmaking Today Vol.20 no.4 Winter 2011
  • 2011: Walking Shadows: A Novel Without Words, Book review: Printmaking Today Vol.20 no.1 Spring 2011
  • 2007: Wood Engraving in Britain Today, Article: Washington Print Club Quarterly Vol.43 no.2 Summer 2007. Author: Simon Brett

Other Activities

  • 2018: Elected Fellow (RE) Royal Society of Painter-Printmakers, Associate (ARE), 2014
  • 2013: Fellow of the Higher Education Academy
  • 2012: Postgraduate Certificate of Academic Practice in Art, Design and Communication, CLTAD University of the Arts London
  • 2009: Society of Wood Engravers – Elected a member of the Society of Wood Engravers, UK