Keith Vaughan – Romanticism to Abstraction

A new exhibition marking the centenary of the birth of the British painter Keith Vaughan (1912-1977) opened earlier in March at the Pallant House Gallery in Chichester.

Born in the nearby Sussex village of Selsey, Vaughan was one of the most significant artists of his generation, best-known for his painterly depictions of the male nude in the landscape.

Self-taught as an artist, Vaughan studied at Christ’s Hospital school at Horsham, before working as a designer for Lintas, the advertising arm of Lever Brothers, which informed his strong sense of composition. Although he was grouped with the ‘Neo-Romantic’ artists during the 1940s, Vaughan was an independent figure in the British art world, and an influential tutor at Camberwell School of Art, the Central School of Art and Design and the Slade. Literature and European art had a powerful influence on him, particularly the work of Cézanne, Picasso, Matisse and Nicholas de Staël. He kept a moving journal in which he frankly recorded his thoughts on art, his homosexuality, and struggles with depression, which ended with his tragic suicide.

The exhibition runs until 10th June 2012 at the Pallant House Gallery.

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