London, South Kensington
15 July 2009
Sven Berlin (1911-2000)
signed and dated 'SVEN B/38' (lower left), signed and dated again 'SVEN Berlin/1940.' (centre left)
oil on panel
21 x 11 in. (53.3 x 30 cm.)
Painted in 1938.
with Modern Art Gallery Ltd., London.
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London, England & Co., Jack Bilbo & The Moderns : The Modern Art Gallery 1941-1948, 1 - 30 November 1990, no. 6.
The present work was painted between 1938-1940 and is an important visual record of Berlin in his first year of residency in St Ives. In 1938, St Ives was a flourishing community of traditionalist artists. However, within a decade the St Ives School would be firmly seeded. In the present work we can observe how Sven's own approach to his work in St Ives was already taking shape. In Self-Portrait Sven demonstrates his early draughtmanship echoing Rembrandt and his superlative use of colour inspired by Japanese print artists.
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