Rachel Howard’s paintings have drawn comparisons to the work of Modernist masters Mark Rothko and Barnett Newman for their blurred, moody, and often streaked surfaces. Like the former, too, Howard’s artistic practice is profoundly informed by a religious upbringing, and she is noted for her examination of dark psychological themes such as sin, suicide, and suffering. Nevertheless, it is Howard’s bold experiments with paint and figuration that ultimately sets her apart from her forebears. Howard frequently employs house paint—her canvases display heavy vertical lines and appear to drip with color—and her imagery ranges from the female nude to animals, melding simple drawing techniques with complex painterly expression.
Howard lives and works in London and Gloucestershire in the United Kingdom. She graduated from Goldsmiths College in 1991 with a degree in fine arts, and in 1992, she was awarded the Prince’s Trust Award. Howard also received the British Council Award in 2008, and she has exhibited her work throughout Europe as well as in the United States.