Thank you, Frank
25th July 2017
Frank Bowling OBE, RA has, once again, kindly donated to the Art for Youth London live auction. His monumental body of work “Mappa Mundi”, comprising 40 canvases, some over 80 feet long, can be seen at the Haus der Kunst in Munich until January 7th 2018. A major retrospective of his works will come to the Tate Britain from June through September 2019. His work is in permanent collections at the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Museum of Modern Art in New York and the Tate. Frank has also been the recipient of two Guggenheim Fellowships.
Born in British Guyana in 1934, Frank arrived in London when he was just 19. After doing National Service in the Air Force, he studied painting at the Slade and the Royal College of Art, distinguishing himself – next to David Hockney – with the silver medal for painting in the RCA’s 1962 graduating class. Moving to New York in 1966, he made the transition from figurative to abstract. Bowling is a leading Colour Field painter, and colour dominated his work in the 1970s. The earthier hues of his figurative palette gave way to an exploration of high-key and lyrical colour. Spontaneity, chance, spilling, dripping and brushing became important working methods in the mid- to late-1970s, and Bowling began referring to his work as “poured paintings”. His recent work utilises a full range of colour and is marked by the artist’s periods of often intense experimentation with surface texture. He maintains working studios in London and New York. He was elected to the Academy in 2005 and was awarded an OBE for services to the arts in 2008. Ever generous - and to encourage younger artists - Frank has donated two full scholarships to the Chelsea College of Art and Design.
His live auction piece, “Paul’s Hand I”, is a small jewel of a painting by a major 20th century artist. An image of his donation will be on our auction page shortly and advance bids will be accepted from mid-September.