KEITH VAUGHAN (1912-1977)
KEITH VAUGHAN (1912-1977)
KEITH VAUGHAN (1912-1977)
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KEITH VAUGHAN (1912-1977)

Landscape with Figure

Details
KEITH VAUGHAN (1912-1977)
Vaughan, K.
Landscape with Figure
signed, inscribed and dated 'LANDSCAPE WITH FIGURE/1975/Keith Vaughan' (on the reverse)
oil on canvas
36 x 28 in. (91.4 x 71.1 cm.)
Painted in 1975.
Provenance
Mrs Irene Kreitman.
with Godson & Coles, London, where purchased by the present owner in June 2006.
Exhibited
London, Waddington Galleries, Keith Vaughan, March - April 1976, catalogue not traced.

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Lot Essay

Landscape with Figure was painted two years before Vaughan died. In his final years, while working in his small studio at Harrow Hill Cottage near Toppesfield in the heart of the Essex countryside, his focus shifted away from the male figure towards landscape subjects. Here both figure and landscape are fused into a single vision. As is the case with many of the late works, this appears to be a thoroughly abstract image, but considered viewing reveals imagery rooted in figurative elements (see also Landscape with Figures, 1975, Landscape with Green Door, 1975 and Mallarmé’s Garden, 1976). Working on the principal that warm colours advance and colder colours recede, the ochre and burnt sienna hues suggest a fleshy human presence in the foreground while the cobalt and cerulean blues indicate a distant fusion of architectural and organic forms. It is interesting to note that Vaughan occasionally referred to his photography when painting. Several surviving transparencies, taken by him in the 1970s, show his partner Ramsay McClure in the snow covered garden at Harrow Hill. The distinctive, glowing colour of these Kodachrome slides certainly affected his choice of palette in other works, and it is probably also the case here.

Typical features of Vaughan’s late, distilled style include the blocked-in forms, taught composition and diagonal brush tracks. The pigment is handled with supreme assurance as opaque patches are played off against translucent dilutions of colour.

We are very grateful to Gerard Hastings for his assistance in cataloguing this lot.

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