Keith Vaughan (British, 1912-1977) Road to the Sea 26 x 37 cm. (10 1/4 x 14 5/8 in.) (Painted 1953-1958)

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Lot 5AR
Keith Vaughan
(British, 1912-1977)
Road to the Sea 26 x 37 cm. (10 1/4 x 14 5/8 in.)

Sold for £ 37,500 (US$ 47,208) inc. premium
Keith Vaughan (British, 1912-1977)
Road to the Sea
oil on paper laid on board laid on card
26 x 37 cm. (10 1/4 x 14 5/8 in.)
Painted 1953-1958

Footnotes

  • Provenance
    Laurence Ogilvie Esq., purchased at the 1958 exhibition
    His sale; Bonhams, London, 30 May 2012, lot 77, where purchased by the present owner,
    Private Collection, U.K.

    Exhibited
    Bristol, Royal West of England Academy, Spring Exhibition, 1958, cat.no.104
    Bath, Bath Festival Exhibition, Loan Exhibition of Paintings from Private Collections, 8-16 June 1963, cat.no.33
    Bristol, Bristol City Art Gallery, 1987-90

    Literature
    Anthony Hepworth and Ian Massey, Keith Vaughan, The Mature Oils 1946-1977, Sansom & Company, Bristol, 2012, p.110, cat.no.AH274

    This work is now known to be the same picture as AH151. The present picture was originally titled Foreshore (1953) and was then altered and reworked by the Artist in 1958 prior to the Spring Exhibition at the Royal West of England Academy, Bristol where it was exhibited the same year.

    Vaughan made several trips to Ireland in the late 1950s, making drawings and collecting visual information in his notebooks as he went along. These studies of figures and landscape features were later worked on and developed into paintings on his return to London. The artist visited Ireland in September 1957 and returned the following year, travelling around the rugged West Coast up to Donegal and then on to Dublin (note the pencil sketch, Donegal Outhouse, 1958). It is probable that initial ideas for the present work were generated on this visit, with the painting being executed later in his Belsize Park studio. At this time Vaughan was developing a style that was at once abstract and figurative. "I seem to be purposefully trying to make a composition of mutual contradictions. Figures which aren't figures, landscape space which is something else, shapes which are neither abstract nor figurative." (Keith Vaughan, Journal, 27 November 1957).

    Vaughan described the Irish landscape as the "perfect geographical situation... with coast, rocky harbours, wide beaches, mountains, river scenery, all within 6–10 miles in different directions. Hard to believe any city would have more to offer.... Rain – the most persistent feature of this place." (Keith Vaughan: Journal (unpublished entry), August 1958). He was clearly taken by the rugged Celtic landscape, if not the weather, and admirably captures its quality in the grey/green hues and the vigorous application of the pigment. The almost seamless integration of the disposition and temperament of the figure with the character of the setting is perhaps one of Vaughan's most notable achievements as an artist. 



    We are grateful to Gerard Hastings for compiling this catalogue entry and to Anthony Hepworth for his assistance in cataloguing this lot. Gerard Hasting's book, Awkward Artefacts: The 'Erotic Fantasies' of Keith Vaughan, is published by Pagham Press in association with The Keith Vaughan Society.
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