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Reverberations Modern Art in St Ives 9 – 26 February 2018

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Page 1 KENNETH ARMITAGE CBE 1916–2002 Seated Group / 1960 Lithograph / 40 x 58 cm (sheet) Unsigned proof aside from edition of 300 Curwen Studio stamp on reverse Price: £1,000

Printed at Curwen Studios, this image relates closely to Armitage’s Geometry of Fear sculpture of the 1950s, which portrayed joined figures, often in groups, cast in bronze as single pieces. There are several examples in the Tate Collection, which also includes a copy of this lithograph. Pictured with 1960s Ernest Race ‘Antelope Chair’, designed in 1951 for the Festival of Britain: £550

Page 2 W. BARNS-GRAHAM CBE 1912–2004 Untitled (Rock Forms) / 1952 Oil on canvas / 40 x 76 cm Signed and dated Provenance: The Wilhelmina Barns-Graham Trust Price: £35,000

Wilhemina Barns-Graham’s work of the 1950s was dominated by abstract compositions generated with the aid of geometrical formulae and derived from forms and phenomena found in the natural environment. Among her preferred sources were seaside rocks. This painting is closely connected to the painting Rock Theme (St. Just) 1953 currently showing at Tate St Ives. Pictured with Late 17th /Early 18th Century Oak Bench: NFS and Sotis Filippedes ‘Rippled Bowl’: £350

Page 3 TREVOR BELL 1930–2017 Redder / 2003 Acrylic on canvas / 61 x 61 cm Signed, titled and dated on reverse Provenance: Private Collection Exhibited: ‘Trevor Bell’, New Millennium Gallery, 2003 (illustrated in catalogue) Price: £4,000

Trevor Bell made his first shaped canvas in 1962 and continued to experiment with the form of his paintings right up until his death in 2017. Less dramatic in shape than many of his earlier experiments, this painting from 2005 retains the sculptural feel of much of his work, bringing the architecture of the space around the painting into play, and also demonstrating the daring use of colour for which his work was often noted. Pictured with a Pierre Paulin ‘Tulip Chair’ designed in 1965 for Artifort: £500

Page 4 SANDRA BLOW 1925–2006 Untitled / 2003 Hessian, paper and acrylic collage / 91 x 91 cm Signed and dated Provenance: Private Collection, acquired directly from the artist Price: £9,000


Sandra Blow, along with Terry Frost, was one of finest collage artists this country has ever produced. Her abstract works of this period combine her later passion for colour with the earlier lessons of Art Informel, which she inherited from her time with the Italian artist Alberto Burri in the late 1940s. This large work on paper combines hessian and paper collage elements with acrylic paint. Pictured with Troika Pottery ‘Urn Vase’ decorated by Louise Jinks c.1980s: £295

Page 5 ALAN DAVIE 1920–2014 Tiwi Spirit Study / 1997 Gouache on paper / 46.5 x 59.5 cm Signed, titled and dated Provenance: Private Collection Price: £4,500

Alan Davie’s work often incorporated mysterious symbols drawn from a wide range of sources, from American Indian pottery, maps, ancient rock-carvings and Aboriginal art. The title of this gouache from 1997 suggests a connection with the Tiwi Islands of Australia’s Northern Territories, whose Aboriginal culture created wooden carvings, often depicting birds from Tiwi mythology. Pictured with Marcel Breuer Bent Plywood ‘Isokon’ Table: £550 and ‘Vase’ in the style of Joanna Constantinides: £250

Page 6 PAUL FEILER 1918–2013 Ambit VIII VI ‘82 / 1982 Oil on canvas laid on panel 91.5 x 91.5 cm Signed, titled and dated on reverse Provenance: Private Collection

Paul Feiler’s painting was for many years lyrical, with harmonious tones and shapes that, for all their abstraction, were based on his experience of the natural world. In his final decades, however, he developed a more geometric idiom, creating paintings that were framed to look like portals, as if opening into a hidden, shrine-like space remote from everyday reality. This large canvas is a fine example of his work of this later period.

Price: £35,000

Pictured with ‘Large Turquoise Bowl’ by Usch Spettigue: £100

Page 7 SIR TERRY FROST 1915–2003 Untitled / 1970 Acrylic on canvas / 101.5 x 76 cm Signed and dated on reverse Provenance: The Artist’s Family Price: £26,000

Frost was best known for his geometric abstractions. Overlapping half circles, rectangles, and squares of bright colours, the artist’s work conveyed his enthusiasm for perceptual phenomena. This painting from 1970 employs familiar shape motifs but perhaps with a less familiar and slightly subtler palette than some of his more recognisable primary works. Pictured with Marcel Breuer Bent Plywood ‘Isokon’ Table: £550 and ‘Moonstone Football Vase’ designed for Wedgewood by Keith Murray c.1935: £550

Page 8 PATRICK HAYMAN 1915–1988 Winter Landscape with Dragon / 1986 Oil on canvas / 41 x 51 cm Signed; signed, titled and dated on reverse Provenance: The Artist’s Estate Private Collection Exhibited: ‘Patrick Hayman’, Blond Fine Art, 1986, No.63 Literature: ‘Patrick Hayman –Visionary Artist’, Mel Gooding, 2005, illus p.88

Bringing together some of Hayman's repeatedly explored, distinctive poetic, witty and poignant motifs (figures, lone trees, boats, the sea, dragons, etc.), this painting from near the end of the artist's life exemplifies the way that subjects from history, myth, religion, literature and the everyday were drawn into and transformed by the idiosyncratic world of his imagination. Pictured with Oak Arts & Crafts Book Rack: £300

Price: £5,000


Page 9 BARBARA HEPWORTH DBE 1903–1975 Three Forms Assembling / 1969 Lithograph / 65 x 50 cm (sheet) Signed / Edition 30/65 Price: £4,500

One of Hepworth's first forays into lithography, Three Forms Assembling was printed by Stanley Jones at Curwen Press in 1968 and published as part of the Europäische Graphik VI portfolio by Galerie Wolfgang Ketterer in cooperation with the publisher Felix H. Man, Munich 1969. The portfolio also contained works by Rudolf Belling, Max Bill, Reg Butler, Eduardo Chillida, Marino Marini, Henry Moore, Fritz Wotruba and Ossip Zadkine. Pictured with 1960s Ernest Race ‘Antelope Chair’, designed in 1951 for the Festival of Britain: £550

Page 10 / cover image PATRICK HERON CBE 1920–1999 Untitled (Plate 15 from January Suite) / 1973 Screenprint / 58 x 81 cm (sheet) Printed by Kelpra Studio, published by Waddington Graphics, London Signed and dated / Edition 44/72 Price: £5,750

Patrick Heron was one of many leading British artists who took part in the revival of printmaking and the rise of screenprinting in the 1960s. This was inspired by the example of American artists such as Andy Warhol, and stimulated by the partnership of British printers such as Chris Prater – in whose Kelpra Studio this screenprint was made. Heron's screenprints, like his oil paintings, rely on the use of flat, vivid colour and sensuously manipulated forms. In this Untitled Plate 15 from his January Suite, Heron uses a characteristic abstract language of balanced, interlinking shapes in which colour appears to float in space. Pictured with Late 17th /Early 18th Century Oak Bench: NFS

Page 11 PATRICK HERON Blue and Black Stripes / 1958 Lithograph / 59 x 43 cm Signed and dated / Edition 25/25 Provenance: Private Collection Price: £6,500

Patrick Heron produced one of his first known editioned lithographs Red Garden under the supervision of Henry Cliffe at Corsham College of Art, Bath, in 1956. Blue and Black Stripes (along with Grey and Black Stripes, Grey and Brown Stripes and Red and Yellow Image) was one of a series of lithographs made in 1958 at Curwen Studios, copies of which are held in the Tate Collection. Pictured with ‘Sóley Chair’ designed by Valdimar Harðarson for Kusch & Co. in 1982: £150 each (two available)

Page 12 ROGER HILTON CBE 1911–1975 Untitled (Figures in a Boat) / 1974 Gouache and charcoal on paper / 21 x 30 cm Signed with initials and dated Provenance: The Artist’s Estate Private Collection Price: £4,500

The last few years of Roger Hilton's life were characterised by an outpouring of paintings produced whilst the artist was in serious ill health and bedridden for much of the time. At Christmas 1972, he started to play with the poster paints given to one of his sons and began a prolific output of works on paper in charcoal and gouache. Imagery had never been far away, even in his most abstract works and, years before, he had announced his wish to ‘reinvent figuration’. Now animals and birds, nudes and boats were conjured up with apparent abandon but with extraordinary control. At times frustrated, at times joyous, frequently hilarious, these paintings are a poignant testament to his determination to make art in the face of death. Pictured with ‘White Sculptural Bowl’ by Rebecca Harvey: £180


Page 13 BEN NICHOLSON OM 1894–1982 Abstract Composition 1935/36 / 1973 Lithograph / 66.5 x 80 cm (sheet) From the ‘Penwith Portfolio’, 1973 Signed in pencil on reverse Edition 67/90 Provenance: Private Collection Price: £5,950

Ben Nicholson agreed to collaborate on drawing this composition when Stanley Jones, the director of the Curwen Lithography Studio, was working to produce a portfolio of lithographs to be sold in support of the Penwith Society of Arts in St Ives. Many artists, such as Hepworth, Lanyon and Piper, who had been central to the development of the ‘St. Ives’ school of painting in early 20th century British art, agreed to contribute works to help raise money for the Society. Nicholson had not drawn a lithograph since the earliest part of his career, but working with Stanley Jones, and using the maquette of a 1935 composition, he created this great example of early British pure abstract art. Pictured with Marcel Breuer Bent Plywood ‘Isokon’ Table: £550 and ‘Moonstone Football Vase’ designed for Wedgewood by Keith Murray c.1935: £550

Page 14 KATE NICHOLSON b.1929 Haystack in Cumbrian Fields Oil on canvas / 99 x 91 cm Signed and titled on artist’s label on reverse Provenance: The Artist’s Studio Price: £5,250

Kate Nicholson is the daughter of Ben and Winifred Nicholson. A precociously talented painter, this early figurative landscape was probably painted whilst still a teenager in the late 1940s. The dramatically composed painting is dominated by a billowing, wrapped haystack behind which lies a stone circle under a threatening sky in the Cumbrian Hills, possibly close to the artist's childhood home near Brampton. Pictured with Late 17th /Early 18th Century Oak Bench: NFS and ‘Large Jug’ by Richard Phethean: £280

Page 15 VICTOR PASMORE CH CBE 1908–1998 Points of Contact No.27 / 1974 Screenprint / 67.5 x 60 cm Signed with monogram and dated Edition 46/70 Price: £2,450

In the 1940s, Pasmore was converted to abstract art through the influence of the artist Paul Klee and by contemporary theories about the harmonious balances achieved through the positioning of lines and shapes in space. In 1948 he turned to pure abstraction in an attempt to create art no longer dependent on nature but on a disciplined visual language based on the circle, square and spiral. His Points of Contact series does, however, make reference to nature, being based on rock formations he studied at St.Ives, displaying early use of the flat, dappled and linear motifs that were to become his signature. These forms are evidently organic – complex shapes moving and pressing against one another. The Points of Contact series of screenprints was produced at Kelpra Studios and copies appear in the Tate Collection. Pictured with ‘Round Rail Sofa’ by Ron Arad, 1981: £2,500

Page 16 JOHN WELLS 1907–2000 Untitled / c.1950s Oil on wood panel / 27.9 x 40 cm Studio stamp on reverse Provenance: The Artist’s Estate Exhibited: ‘Tom Early and Friends’, Falmouth Art Gallery, 2014 Price: £12,000

Though living in Newlyn, Wells was at the centre of artistic activity in post-war St Ives. He was a founder member of the Crypt Group in 1946 and of the Penwith Society of Arts in 1949. This example of Wells’ painting of the 1950s suggests a meeting point between Constructivist ideas initiated in the artist’s exposure to the work of Naum Gabo, Ben Nicholson and Barbara Hepworth in the 1940s, elements of the abstract, geometric ‘Flight Form’ paintings of the early 1950s, and later moves toward the integration of these ideas with a more ‘traditional’ approach to St Ives-style landscape-based abstraction. The Tate Collection hold several example of Wells’ work. Pictured with ‘Large Shouldered Studio Vase’ by Ursula Mommens: £250


Reverberations: Modern Art in St Ives  

The current exhibition at Tate St Ives, 'Modern Art & St Ives', features most of the major names of post-War St Ives Art and places their wo...

Reverberations: Modern Art in St Ives  

The current exhibition at Tate St Ives, 'Modern Art & St Ives', features most of the major names of post-War St Ives Art and places their wo...