Keith Vaughan (British, 1912-1977) The Seed Dies 34.5 x 43 cm. (13 1/2 x 17 in.)
Lot 8
Keith Vaughan (British, 1912-1977) The Seed Dies 34.5 x 43 cm. (13 1/2 x 17 in.)
£18,000 - 25,000
US$ 31,000 - 43,000
Auction Details
Lot Details
Keith Vaughan (British, 1912-1977)
The Seed Dies
signed and dated 'K Vaughan 52' (upper left), inscribed and dated again 'THE SEED DIES/1952/OIL ON BOARD' (on a label attached to the backboard)
oil on board
34.5 x 43 cm. (13 1/2 x 17 in.)
Painted in 1952

Footnotes

  • PROVENANCE:
    With Austin Desmond Fine Art, London, where purchased by the present owner, 21 December 1989
    Private Collection, U.K.

    EXHIBITED:
    Austin Desmond Fine Art, Keith Vaughan, 1987, ex.no.60
    London, Arts Council of Great Britain, Recent British Painting, 1954, cat.no.57, where lent by the artist

    The Seed Dies ranks among Vaughan's earliest forays into abstraction. It was painted in 1952, the year the artist would have acquainted himself with the works of Nicolas de Stael (1914-1955) at the Matthiesen Gallery in London. Like de Stael, Vaughan's pictorial vocabulary oscillated between almost pure abstraction, as in the present lot, and more figurative work.

    There is a typed transcript, verso, from The New Testament which reads, 'A grain of wheat remains no more than a single grain unless it is dropped into the ground and dies. If it does die, then it produces many grains. Whoever loses his own life will save it...' John 12, verse 24.

    Despite there being almost no references to the outside world in The Seed Dies this Biblical passage does assist the viewer in reading the painting. A brown circular motif in the lower centre of the composition would appear to be the seed, which has just been released from a vertical appendage of the same colour, surrounded perhaps by the gently curving forms of unthreshed corn.
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