• Christies auction house James Christie logo

    Sale 5390

    20th Century British Art

    7 October 2008, London, South Kensington

  • Lot 220

    Jean Spencer (1942-1998)

    Studies for Tate Paintings (Untitled)

    Price Realised  

    Jean Spencer (1942-1998)
    Studies for Tate Paintings (Untitled)
    gouache
    27½ x 42 in. (69.8 x 106.7 cm.)
    Painted in 1996.


    Contact Client Service
    • info@christies.com

    • New York +1 212 636 2000

    • London +44 (0)20 7839 9060

    • Hong Kong +852 2760 1766

    • Shanghai +86 21 6355 1766

    In the mid 1970s, Jean Spencer began to explore a whole new world of colour qualities and relationships - a development which continued for the rest of her life. In her own words, in these works (of which Studies for Tate Paintings is a late but typical example) 'chromatic complexity supersedes geometric complexity' (Jean Spencer, private archive, 1978). The paintings still involve geometry, mainly in the form of carefully calculated vertical or horizontal bands within a square or rectangle, but in a much simpler form than in her white reliefs. Her arrays of colour - evolved through a lengthy process of experimentation with degrees of hue, saturation, luminosity, and harmony - form a subtle, complex and highly distinctive palette. This particular painting was a study for a work to be exhibited at the Tate in 1999.

    A.F.

    Special Notice

    No VAT will be charged on the hammer price, but VAT at 15% will be added to the buyer's premium which is invoiced on a VAT inclusive basis.


    Literature

    Exhibition catalogue, Jean Spencer A Retrospective Exhibition, Oundle, September - October 2006, p. 19, illustrated.


    Exhibited

    Oundle, Yarrow Gallery, Jean Spencer A Retrospective Exhibition, September - October 2006, no. 19.