Deryck Healey

1937 – 2004
Deryck Healey was a South African born colourist who spent four of his remaining years working from his home studio in Ballast Quay Road, before he died in his home country in 2004 at the age of 67.

A display of the internationally acclaimed artist’s contemporary mixed media abstracts, some produced at his home overlooking the River Colne, were put on show at the Wivenhoe Gallery in the Wivenhoe Business Centre in May 2007. 

Andy Bass, owner of the Gallery said "This exhibition is the Wivenhoe Gallery’s most prestigious show since it started displaying work by East Anglian based artists" and believes "potential art buyers and visitors just popping by to browse, will find Deryck Healey’s work just as an exciting experience as those people who were previously acquainted with his work". 

Acrylic, pen, ink and sand are amongst the materials Deryck Healey used to create his canvas and mono prints. The artist’s passion and enthusiasm for life which were reflected in the more than 30 pieces seen in the exhibition. Many are evocative of Rothko and Warhol whilst bearing their creator’s very own unique stamp.

His work has been bought by many well-known people including Jasper Conran. Long-term partner Graeme Roberts describes Deryck Healey’s work as exciting, colourful, minimalist abstracts, and remembers the artist as someone who was "enthusiastic about life, encouraging, and great fun."

Deryck Healey became successful as a textile and print designer in the 1960s after gaining a fine arts diploma in Durban, South Africa. He also graduated from the School of Art, Manchester.

The artist had a successful career attracting audiences in New York. Osaka, Los Angeles, Venice and London.

His design consultancy, DHI, won the Queen’s Award for Industry in 1974 for export achievement and services to the textile industry. He was also awarded the Royal Society of Arts Medal for Art and Design and elected to the Craft Council Board for England in the 1980s.

He has had several books published and worked as Professor of Colour at London’s Royal College of Art.

Deryck Healey moved to Wivenhoe in 1999 and spent time in equal measures between Durban and Wivenhoe working on exhibitions. Examples of his work are on permanent display at Cape Town’s Glen Carlou Gallery in South Africa.

Some of the works which were on display at the Wivenhoe Gallery: