Canwood Gallery is delighted to be hosting Experiences of Nature by Anthony Whishaw RA featuring Nicole Farhi. A not to be missed exhibition on until 29th July.
EXPERIENCES OF NATURE
This exhibition, selected from the artist’s studio, examines Whishaw’s fascination with the natural environment and draws from a body of work painted over the last 40 years.
Whishaw’s work is challenging – he makes the viewer work hard to interpret his warping and skewing of space and form and he acknowledges that he explores unusual visual languages, employing illusion and allusion. He often works on his paintings over a period of many years, making alterations and additions as he lives with the canvases.
Whishaw’s paintings vary dramatically in size, the smallest work in this exhibition, his playful ‘Spider’s Website’ measures 15 x 10cm whilst his ‘Forest Interior Triptych’, hanging in the next door barn is 168 x 685cm. To allow him to work on these very different scales Whishaw divides his time between two studios in Bethnal Green and Kensington.
The exhibition continues upstairs with a group of works by Whishaw’s late wife, Jean Gibson (1927-1991) and sculptor Nicole Farhi, who was taught by Jean Gibson in the Kensington studio where Whishaw still works today.
Selina Skipwith Curator and Art Advisor
ANTHONY WHISHAW RA
Anthony Whishaw studied at Chelsea School of Art from 1948 to 1952 and the Royal College of Art, London from 1952 to 1955, when he was awarded the ARCA (first class hons), the RCA Travelling Scholarship, an Abbey Minor Scholarship and a Spanish Government Scholarship.Whishaw has been producing challenging, thought provoking paintings for well over 60 years but, not being aligned to any of the contemporary groups or schools, his work cannot be conveniently categorised. Over this long period he has fiercely guarded his independence.
Whishaw’s work is represented in many prestigious international collections – museums, corporate collections and notable private collections including:
Arts Council; European Parliament, Strasbourg; Government Art Collection; Museo de Arte Moderno, Murcia, Spain; Museo de Bahia, Brazil; Museum of Contemporary Art, Helsinki; National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, Australia; National Gallery of Wales; Seattle Museum of Art, USA; Sharjah Museum, UAE; The Royal Collection and Tate Gallery to name but a few.
He was elected a Member of the London Group in 1979, an Associate Royal Academician in 1980, a Royal Academician in 1989 and a Member of the Royal West of England Academy in 1992.
At the age of 88, Whishaw still paints daily and is working towards a number of exhibitions to celebrate his 90th birthday in 2020.
JEAN GIBSON(1927-1991) was a sculptor and maker of reliefs. She was born in Stockport, Cheshire and studied at Wimbledon School of Art and then the Royal College of Art, 1951-1955, graduating with first class honours and a travelling scholarship. She exhibited regularly in group exhibitions from the 60’s until her death in 1991 including the annual Royal Academy Summer exhibitions, 1978-91, and the London Group, of which she became a member in 1987.
Jean Gibson whose late work has been described as ‘organic minimalism’ and ‘the contrast between strength and fragility, purity and sensuousness’ was equally inspired by the natural environment. Gibson’s work verges on the abstract and focuses on elements, force and energy.
Gibson was also an inspirational sculpture teacher. She gave lessons in her studio in Kensington. Her protégés will always include her in any commentary on their trajectory as a sculptor. Each started their experience in clay in her studio between the late 1960s and 1980s. One of these protégés was Nicole Farhi.
“Jean changed my life. Through her teaching, I learned more than expressing ideas and feelings. She opened my eyes on the world around me, as if I was seeing it for the first time, and so helped me to discover who I was. Above everything, she taught me always to be true to myself, to be sincere, humble, and at peace.”
Tuesday – Sunday 11am to 4pm HR1 4NF