It was a delight to read the typed artist's statement prepared by Albert Irvin for a publication or exhibition. It's winningly self-deprecating and witty:
'I hardly think that the ragbag of digs and pokes that I have had at life and that it has had at me could be graced by the name of "career", so I find it very difficult to write an account of what it has been to date, or a prophecy of its development in the future.
There was never any time since I can remember that I didn't want to be a painter and the opportunity to study painting first came to me in Northampton during the war. This was interrupted when I was dragged unwillingly into the Royal Air Force, where I wasted a valuable chunk of my life as the undistinguished navigator of a Beaufighter crew.
On release from the Air Force I resumed my painting studies at Goldsmith's College Art School in London, trying during four years to learn something of the elements of my art, and realising, on leaving, how little one learns as a student and how much is left to be learnt for oneself in the dedicated ritual of one's own studio.
I have, at one time or another employed most of the idioms current in the language of contemporary painting in an attempt to build for myself a means of self-expression both personal and capable of communication with anyone interested enough to be a spectator of my work.
I show my work wherever and whenever I can and sell it to any noble soul who'll buy it. This happens too infrequently for comfort so I am obliged to teach, one or two days a week. I like teaching; it can be aggravating but on the whole I like it. And it gets me out of my studio for a bit, which is a good thing.
I have no plans for the future. The future is a series of jerks from one painting to the next, each one sowing the seeds of its successor."