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ANNE MAGILL

JOURNEYS


ANNE MAGILL

J OU R N E Y S 1 0 D E C E M B E R 2 010 ---- 1 6 J A N UA RY 2 011

HE A RT B R EAK 17 Bulstrode Street | London W1U 2JH +44 ( 0 ) 20 3219 5710 / info@heart-break.co.uk Open Monday to Saturday 10am --- 6pm, Sunday 11am --- 4pm www.heart-break.co.uk www.annemagill.com


ANNE MAGILL

J OU R N E Y S


Anne Magill in her studio, October 2010 Fredi Marcarini


Introduction Many of the figures in the latest collection of Anne Magill’s paintings have somehow found themselves at the land’s end, or been otherwise drawn to some stretch of water, to stand and gaze over it. We can only speculate as to what pre-occupies them. Whether they’re trying to muster the courage to make a journey across that water or whether it’s some business back in-land which has driven them to such a place. There’s a universal stillness to them. Often they have their backs turned towards us, or stand in near-silhouette. It could be dawn or dusk. On occasion, it’s almost as if the figures are a part of the land, have become rooted to it, and making precious little progress in whatever decision they came here to make. These men – and the characters in Anne’s work are predominantly men – seem lost in silence. Whether alone or leaning over railings in twos or threes, they are all quietened by something. Even those paintings in which they are active – rowing a boat, say, or restoring some vintage motorbike (something Anne spent endless hours doing with her father and uncles when she was a girl) – there is a sense of silent industry. It would be no exaggeration to say that these are men, at this particular moment at least, of very few words. When I first encountered Anne Magill’s paintings it took me a while for my eyes to find their focus. As if the characters were emerging from memory, or fading into it. They put me in mind of those late-Victorian photographs, like Whitlingham Vale by G. Christopher Davies, in which a ghostly boat eases its way along a winding river, or P.H. Emerson’s At the Ferry – A Misty Morning,, in which a milk cart stands at the water’s edge. Anne’s Morning paintings seem to occupy a similar, half-dreamed territory. A hazy place, both powerfully present and weighed-down with the past. In fact, photographs have sometimes played a part in the early stages of Anne’s work. Specifically, found photographs – odd snaps picked up in junk shops, or mildewed albums of someone’s travels bought at car boot sales. The fact that these are real, lived lives is clearly important, as is the fact that the individuals in the photographs are ultimately unknown and unknowable. It is as if Anne is determined to honour them – to rescue them from oblivion. In that respect her work is an act of restoration, of recovery. I was down in Anne’s studio a couple of weeks ago. Two of the larger canvases leaned up against the main wall and another three or four, released from their stretchers, hung from a line across the windows, gently lifting in the breeze. We were talking about talismans – the lucky charms we keep around the place. Anne had already shown me a battered portrait of the kindly gent she’d bought for a tenner in a Notting Hill junk shop fifteen years ago. Most of the time he’s tucked away out of sight somewhere, but his beneficence is all-pervading. He is a sort of household god. And now she leafed through a pile of papers and produced a small photograph, probably taken in the 1920s. A man in a knee-length leather coat stands on a beach,

with the sea and rocks spread out behind him. In his hands he holds a pair of Mark 9 motorcycle goggles. Around the beginning of each new collection of paintings Anne often works on some new sketch or miniature of that character. Once the show’s complete (months, sometimes years later) she will return to her most recent interpretation of the chap on the beach and, as often as not, find that it contains some intimation as to the tones and textures of the paintings that followed. Drawing things to a close can be just as tough as getting things moving. Whenever I’ve visited Anne’s studio there have been at least a dozen or more works around the place, in various stages of completion. It must be difficult, I imagine, to know when a painting is finished – when to leave it alone. Anne tells me that just when it feels as if the whole process is in danger of grinding to a halt, a minor adjustment to one of the paintings will act as a tipping point for all the others, and they will all suddenly fall into place. It reminded me of a cutting I’ve kept in a scrapbook since the 1980s – an interview with Tom Waits (a fount of wisdom, in my opinion, on the creative process and much else besides).


He’d been asked how he sets about composing a collection of songs for an album. ‘What I usually do,’ he said, ‘is I write two songs and I put ‘em in a room together and they have children.’ That sense of inter-dependence, of a shared genetic code between a collection's individual elements, sounds about right to me. I’ve heard Anne describe her paintings as being members of the same family. There may be times when they don’t sit so well together, but the influence they’re capable of exerting on each other is something to behold. It’s perhaps no surprise that so many of Anne’s subjects are drawn to the point where the land meets the water. By all accounts, she spent half her teenage years staring out from the shore of County Down where, on a clear day, she could see mainland Britain thirty miles away. And it’s easy to see why she might have developed such a fascination for photographs when her own childhood was so sorely lacking in them. The few photos that were taken tended to be put into a drawer and forgotten. Anne’s mother methodically ripped herself out of every one. Photographs can be a way of plotting out one’s life as it unfolds – especially one’s infant years. Of memorializing them. But we should be wary of making too many assumptions. What is often so compelling about Anne’s paintings is the sheer impenetrability of the characters who populate them. I’ve heard Anne say that the closer she gets to completing a painting the less sure she is what’s going on in it. ‘It could be good, could be bad,’ she once told me. That ambiguity only encourages us to come up with our own narratives. And that, in turn, helps make them our own. Anne was eighteen when she left Northern Ireland. She remembers her father seeing her off from the docks at Belfast, with her uncles beside him. Another group of big, silent men at the water’s edge. It was only later that Anne appreciated that her uncles might also have been there to offer moral support to her father. As a young man, Anne’s father was all set to make his own momentous journey, to start a new life out in North America, but in the last few days prior to his departure he met a girl who worked at the local draper’s shop. He never did get on that boat, unlike his friends who, according to legend, went off to the New World and made their fortune. Who knows what might have happened if he’d gone, or how not going affected him? Our lives are full of all sorts of journeys and we may have less control over our destinations than we care to admit. But we should give thanks that Archie Magill turned his back on the Atlantic and chose to stick it out on the coast between Ballywalter and Donaghadee. Otherwise there would very likely be no Anne Magill and for a whole host of reasons the world would be a much poorer place for it. Mick Jackson


On The Journey Home (detail), Catalogue No.27


Harbour (detail), Catalogue No.4


T H E PA I N T I N G S


N E A R LY H O M E C ATA L O G U E N o .1

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IN THE HALF-LIGHT C ATA L O G U E N o . 2

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OF FE W WOR DS C ATA L O G U E N o . 3

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HARBOUR C ATA L O G U E N o . 4

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HARBOUR II C ATA L O G U E N o . 5

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HOMECOMING II C ATA L O G U E N o . 6

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ECLIPSE C ATA L O G U E N o . 7

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W H E N I T H I N K O F YO U , YO U ’ R E AWAY S S M I L I N G C ATA L O G U E N o . 8

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E A R LY A U T U M N C ATA L O G U E N o . 9

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A P E R F E C T D AY C ATA L O G U E N o .10

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S H E LT E R C A T A L O G U E N o . 11

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L AT E E V E N I N G C ATA L O G U E N o .12

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B EF O R E T H E R AC E C ATA L O G U E N o . 13

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SUMMER SONG C ATA L O G U E N o .14

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SPRING MORNING C ATA L O G U E N o .15

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NOCTURNE C ATA L O G U E N o .16

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THE LET TER C ATA L O G U E N o .17

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M E M E N TO C ATA L O G U E N o .18

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A F T E R T H E S TO R M C ATA L O G U E N o .19

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A N D T H E N T H E R E WA S YO U C ATA L O G U E N o . 2 0

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DUSK C ATA L O G U E N o . 21

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HOME C ATA L O G U E N o . 2 2

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B I G C LO U D C ATA L O G U E N o . 2 3

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L O O K I N G AT T H E R I V E R , T H I N K I N G OF THE SEA C ATA L O G U E N o . 2 5

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WHERE THE RIVER MEETS THE SEA C ATA L O G U E N o . 2 6

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T HE DRAWINGS


ON THE JOURNEY HOME C ATA L O G U E N o . 2 7

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SHORELINE C ATA L O G U E N o . 2 8

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ON THE SHORE C ATA L O G U E N o . 2 9

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A N D S T I L L W E WA I T C ATA L O G U E N o . 3 0

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T H E G AT H E R I N G C ATA L O G U E N o . 31

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MIDNIGHT C ATA L O G U E N o . 3 2

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O U R S TO R Y C ATA L O G U E N o . 3 3

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BY T H E W I N DOW C ATA L O G U E N o . 3 4

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S WAY C ATA L O G U E N o . 3 7

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THREE FRIENDS C ATA L O G U E N o . 4 3

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A D AY O U T C ATA L O G U E N o . 4 4

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IN THE WINGS C ATA L O G U E N o . 4 9

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B A C K S TA G E C ATA L O G U E N o . 5 0

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A S PEC I A L PL AC E C ATA L O G U E N o . 51

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A PERFECT MORNING C ATA L O G U E N o . 5 3

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Catalogue 1

Nearly Home

Acrylic on Canvas

47 x 49 ins

£55,000

2

In the Halflight

Acrylic on Canvas

36 x 40 ins

£35,000

3

Of Few Words

Oil on Canvas

36 x 36 ins

£35,000

4

Harbour

Acrylic on canvas

63 x 63 ins

£76,000

5

Harbour II

Acrylic on board

7 x 7 ins

6

Homecoming II

Acrylic on Canvas

20 x 39 ins

£35,000

7

Eclipse

Acrylic on board

11 x 48 ins

£35,000

8

When I think of you, you’re always smiling

Oil on Canvas

8 x 8 ins

9

Early Autumn

Acrylic on Canvas

12 x 39 ins

10 A Perfect Day

Acrylic on board

8 x 5 ins

£8,500

11 Shelter

Acrylic on panel

7 x 7 ins

£7,500

12 Late Evening

Acrylic on board

24 x 42 ins

13 Before the Race

Acrylic on canvas

7 x 5 ins

£7,500

14 Summer Song

Acrylic on panel

7 x 7 ins

£7,500

15 Spring Morning

Acrylic on board

8 x 13 ins

£9,500

16 Nocturne

Acrylic on Canvas

7 x 9 ins

£8,500

17 The Letter

Acrylic on board

8 x 9 ins

£8,500

18 Memento

Acrylic on board

5 x 4 ins

£7,000

19

Oil on Board

7 x 8 ins

£7,000

20 And then there was you

Acrylic on board

12 x 25 ins

21 Dusk

Oil on Canvas

8 x 8 ins

22 Home

Acrylic on canvas

16 x 20 ins

£12,500

23 Big Cloud

Acrylic on canvas

16 x 20 ins

£12,500

24 Morning

Oil on Canvas

5 x 7 ins

£6,500

25 Looking at the River, thinking of the Sea

Acrylic on panel

7 x 8 ins

£7,500

26 Where the River meets the Sea

Acrylic on canvas

63 x 63 ins

£55,000

27 On the Journey Home

Charcoal and Pastel

47 x 70 ins

£17,500

28 Shoreline

Charcoal and Pastel

6 x 6 ins

29 On the Shore

Charcoal and Pastel

17 x 25 ins

£12,500

30 And still we wait

Charcoal and Pastel

6 x 10 ins

£4,200

31 The Gathering

Charcoal and Pastel

7 x 11 ins

£4,200

32 Midnight

Charcoal and Pastel

9 x 11 ins

£4,200

After the Storm

£8,000

£9,000 £30,000

£40,000

£16,500 £9,500

£3,800


33 Our Story

Charcoal and Pastel

8 x 12 ins

£4,200

34 By the Window

Charcoal and Pastel

5 x 6 ins

£3,800

35 And the light danced on the water

Acrylic on board

4 x 6 ins

£6,500

36 Before the Race II

Acrylic on Canvas

12 x 24 ins

37 Sway

Acrylic on board

4 x 6 ins

38 Our Celebration

Acrylic on board

13 x 13 ins

£14,500

39 ..and the Sun Shone

Oil on canvas

10 x 14 ins

£14,500

40 ..for you to come

Acrylic on panel

6 x 8 ins

£8,000

41 A dear Friend

Oil on panel

13 x 9 ins

£9,500

42 The Night before the Race

Oil on board

6 x 8 ins

£7,500

43 Three Friends

Acrylic on board

6 x 16 ins

£9,500

44 A Day Out

Charcoal and pastel

24 x 33 ins

£15,000

45 Dawn

Acrylic on canvas

28 x 40 ins

£35,000

46 Leaving

Acrylic on canvas

12 x 24 ins

£14,500

47 The Workshop

Acrylic on board

11 x 48 ins

£35,000

48 Morning Light

Acrylic on linen

18 x 18 ins

£16,500

49 In the Wings

Acrylic on board

11 x 8 ins

£8,500

50 Backstage

Acrylic on board

11 x 8 ins

£8,500

51 A Special Place

Oil on canvas

26 x 28 ins

£25,000

52 Nothing else matters

Acrylic on board

15 x 14 ins

£16,500

53 A Perfect Morning

Acrylic on board

32 x 47 ins

£45,000

£18,500 £7,500

Prices are inclusive of VAT (UK Sales Tax) at the prevailing rate. For information about Net Export prices, please contact the gallery. If you are interested in buying or reserving a work by Anne Magill, please contact: Nathalie Martin or Sophie Harral at Heartbreak on 020 3219 5710 or via email: nathalie@heart-break.co.uk | sophie@heart-break.co.uk. Items indicated as being currently reserved may become available as they are not confirmed sales. E&OE


Anne Magill Born in County Down, Northern Ireland in 1962, Anne Magill studied at St. Martin’s School of Art in London. Education 1981 - 84 1:1 Hons degree illustration, St. Martin’s School of Art, London 1980 - 81 Foundation Course, Liverpool Polytechnic (now Sir John Moore’s College) Solo Exhibitions 2010 / 11 Journeys, Heartbreak, London 2008 Art London with Heartbreak, London 2008 Art London with Medici Gallery, London 2007 Anne Magill, Medici Gallery, London 2005 Anne Magill, Medici Gallery, London 2003 Anne Magill, Medici Gallery, London 2001 Anne Magill, Medici Gallery, London 1998 Anne Magill, Philharmonic Hall Gallery, Liverpool 1997 Anne Magill, Medici Gallery, London 1997 A Special Place II, Hybrid Gallery, London 1997 Anne Magill - New Paintings, J Walter Thompson Gallery, London 1996 A Special Place, Hybrid Gallery 1996 Anne Magill, Medici Gallery, London 1996 Mirror of the Soul, The Chapel of Art Gallery, Criccieth, Wales 1996 Arts of Work, Chelsea Art Club 1994 Anne Magill, Medici Gallery, London 1994 Anne Magill - New Work, Talberg Taylor Gallery 1994 Winter’s Morning, Equus Gallery, Newmarket 1992 Anne Magill - New Work, Talberg Taylor Gallery 1992 Men, Davies London 1992 Anne Magill, AOI Gallery Awards 1992 1991 1984 1983 1981

B&H Gold Illustration Awards - First Prize B&H Gold Illustration Awards - Highly commended B&H Gold Illustration Awards - Highly commended B&H Gold Illustration Awards - Highly commended Design Council Award - Highly commended


Heartbreak is delighted and privileged to be representing Anne Magill and for Journeys to be the exhibition with which we see out 2010 and welcome in 2011. Anne Magill is one of the art world’s best-kept secrets, despite having work held in high profile corporate and private collections worldwide. She will not remain a secret to the privileged few for much longer, however, as the events planned for her in 2011 and 2012 introduce her work to a wider audience, both here in the UK and the USA. We are grateful to British Airways for allowing us to feature Magill’s stunning painting, Harbour Harbour,, before it goes to New York to be installed as the centre piece of their newly refurbished Concorde Lounge at JFK in February 2011. All of us at Heartbreak have hugely enjoyed getting to know Anne and her work over the last year and we look forward to a long and successful working relationship. Nathalie Martin Director Heartbreak


E-catalogue published and produced by Heartbreak 17 Bulstrode Street, London W1U 2JH Telephone: +44 (0)20 3219 5710 E-mail: info@heart-break.co.uk www.heartbreakpublishing.com For the 2012 e-catalogue ‘Anne Magill: Journeys’ All artworks © Anne Magill Illustrations and Text © Heartbreak


ANNE MAGILL

J OU R N E Y S 1 0 D E C E M B E R 2 010 ---- 1 6 J A N UA RY 2 011

HE A RT B R EAK 17 Bulstrode Street | London W1U 2JH +44 ( 0 ) 20 3219 5710 / info@heart-break.co.uk Open Monday to Saturday 10am --- 6pm, Sunday 11am --- 4pm www.heart-break.co.uk www.annemagill.com

Anne Magill - Journeys  

Catalogue of Paintings and Drawings

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