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  • Provenance

    Juda Rowan Gallery, London; Galerie Jamileh Weber, Zürich

  • Exhibited

    London, Juda Rowan Gallery, Sean Scully – Recent Paintings and Drawings, November 2 - December 15, 1984

  • Catalogue Essay

    Scully's work derived from the traditions of European early modernism (Mondrian and Matisse), in its ideals for harmony and spirituality, and American late modernism (Pollock and Rothko), in its urge for large, open-ended compositions, expressing personal inner states. How to reconcile European order with American vigor—or more specifically, how to combine Mondrian's plastic clarity with Matisse's sensuousness, Pollock's drips, and Rothko's fluidity—has remained the basic question of Scully's art practice to which he gave slightly different answers throughout the years. In the mid- and late 1970s, his paintings reflected the influence of minimalism in their cool, reductivist look and geometric precision. During the 1980s, they gradually changed and became freer and more painterly. Bearing the marks of thick brushstrokes and broad gestures, these paintings manifested dense, yet luminous, surfaces. The most recent ones are looser, more open and fluid. In all of them, stripes retained their constant presence as both a pictorial device and as a means of re-ordering the perceptual world, as well as inner moods. Painted directly and spontaneously in numerous layers of paint, they achieve a tactility of surface similar to that of flesh and skin. It is this quality that endows them with sensual intensity and best characterizes them.
    David Winton Bell Gallery, Sean Scully: Walls, Windows, Horizons, Chicago, 2001, n.p.

245

River

1984
Oil on canvas.
54 1/4 x 71 3/4. (137.7 x 182.2 cm).
Signed, titled and dated “Sean Scully River 1984” on the reverse.

Estimate
£100,000 - 150,000 ‡ ♠

Sold for £423,200

Contemporary Art Evening Sale

Evening Sale
13 October 2007, 4pm
London