Francis Newton Souza (India, 1924-2002) Houses in Hampstead

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Lot 40*
Francis Newton Souza (India, 1924-2002)
Houses in Hampstead

Sold for US$ 228,000 inc. premium
Francis Newton Souza (India, 1924-2002)
Houses in Hampstead
oil on canvas, signed and dated '58 upper right, Gallery One label on reverse, framed
59 x 75 cm.

Footnotes

  • Provenance:
    Acquired from Gallery One by the vendor's father, circa 1960.

    Souza lived in the London district of Hampstead from the mid 1950s until 1967, when he moved to New York. The area housed a vibrant artistic and intellectual community as well as providing rich architectural inspiration and lots of trees. Houses in Hampstead provides a snapshot of a typical rather than particular view, gained through Souza's intimate familiarity with the locale and perspectives obtained from the heights of Hampstead Heath. 'Scapes' (land- and townscapes) belong to Souza's stable of genres. But there is no apocalyptic vision here, nothing is shaken or stirred. In this painting, houses are not imposing white Victorian giants, with stucco-coated fronts. Rather, they are made of earthy umbers, olives and ochres, as if transported from a warm faraway land. Around the time of this painting, Souza described the 'bricks' of his pictorial building technique as geometric compounds of the square and circle. Whatever the intriguing results of Souza's 'homage to the square', this work requires a lot of looking. For the more one looks, the more is the pleasure. A homely painting of homes, heightened by strategically-placed strips of cobalt blue, a touch of ultramarine and a spot of dashing red.

    Francesca Souza
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