Alex Malcolmson was born in Shetland in 1955 and studied drawing, painting and printmaking at Edinburgh College of Art. He worked in the northern isles for several years teaching, painting and exhibiting, and then moved back to Edinburgh to work as a curator before settling in North Yorkshire.
Most of the work created over the past ten years or so has been in the form of box constructions made mainly from wood; carved and painted, sometimes using found materials. The slatted birds started with the idea of an upturned boat; a motif Alex has often used in other ways, drawing on the tradition of decoy making.
Sailing trips, most recently in Scandinavia, ship dioramas, objects associated with seafaring and nautical folk art provide a rich source of ideas for his work.