This August we will exhibit studies and maquettes by Terry Frost with collage, paintings & prints to show how this influential artist used colour & form in his work.
Terry Frost found inspiration everywhere whether it was a walk down the quay at St Ives with his son, fields edged with trees at Leeds, the sun in Arizona, the leaning tower of Pisa and even Mae West's corset!
For more information see our article "Terry Frost in his own words".
To see all the available Terry Frost works click here.
He said to his students "Each picture has to contain some discovery or otherwise it would be dead - or just repetitive or dead".
"Studies c 1950's" exemplifies his constant exploration of form and mark making ideas, which later would be used in larger works e.g. Yellow Tritych (1957-59) (Tate Gallery collection). He discovered impact of harmony, contrast and dissonance relatively early on, and his experiments with colour and form to an established format sustained him throughout his life.
In these studies he is working up a repetoire of motifs or strong recurring images which he would use again and again in his ouevre.
Many of these were derived from the sun, boats, flags, signs as well as other forms.
"Cyclists Battersea" 1947 shows an artist transitioning from representation to abstraction.
At the time he said "It was all coming together for me. Victor (Pasmore) came to Battersea to see what I was doing. Minton and Coldstream were at Camberwell at the time, but what they were doing did not interest me very much. There was something stifling about it. Coldstream was god, but he seemed to put a straightjacket on my imagination. It was right for him, but it became quite clear that this was'nt my way....I have no regrets at all. Rejection is every bit as important as appreciation, providing one has confidence to withstand it."
After Terry Frost started visiting Cyprus in 1977, the sun was a big influence on many works into the 1990's.
He said "The sun is setting beyond the mountains and there is just a moment when the sun becomes a vast red circle"
This is exemplified here in "Sun and Spirals" 1998.
Spirals, apart from being a pleasing motif, were seen by Frost in a variety of sources: the Arizona desert, a whirling sheeps tail and eddies in a receding tide.
They first appeared in a relief in 1951-52, but really resurfaced in a number of works from 1990 - specifically the Arizona Triptych.