Gavin Rain (°1971, Cape Town), is a South African artist.

From a young age Rain has been passionate about art and painting. He studied art and neuropsychology at the University of Cape Town. Influenced by Seurat, Russian avant garde art of the 1900s and several architects (he planned to study architecture at first), in 2003/2004, he discovered his own Neo-Pointillist style, which he developed over the following years.

Up close, Rain’s paintings consist of small peaky concentric dots, painted with different colours of acrylic paint. The eye of the viewer combines these colours as one. The subject of the painting is only revealed once the viewer takes some steps back. The further the distance, the clearer the portrait becomes. 

Gavin first sketches the portrait he wants to paint or uses the image of a photograph. He often utilises a projection or a grid (more accurate) to decide where to put his dots. He draws circles using stencils. For determining which final colour he wants a dot to have, Rain consults a list of 14 000 different dots that he has ever made. Out of this list, he picks the combination that creates the exact colour he wants. Typical for his technique is the difference in size of each dot. The bigger the dots, the darker the area gets and the smaller the dots, the lighter it becomes. The colours of separate dots will also merge together into a new colour. For shading, dots get smaller and combined colours get lighter. And thus his image is created.

In 2011, he participated in the 54th Venice Biennale, for Costa Rica; in 2013, he was present in the pavilion of Bangladesh. His art is represented in galleries and exhibitions worldwide.

Everyone has to get my message – which is to step back..”