Keith Vaughan: Figure and Ground

A new exhibition and book by four lecturers at the School of Art will bring to light their collaborative research on the artist Keith Vaughan (1912-1977). Vaughan was one of the most celebrated British artists of his generation.

A friend of Graham Sutherland in the 1940s he was associated during the war with the rising Neo-Romantic movement along with artists such as John Minton and John Craxton.  A contemporary of Francis Bacon and Lucian Freud, Vaughan became, with them, representative of powerful figure-based painting in the Britain of the 1950s and ’60s. old seaweed hoist

 Old Seaweed Hoist, lithograph

Among the significant holdings of the School of Art Gallery and Museum are a collection of over 500 works by Vaughan which were acquired from the artist’s estate in 1985.  Consisting of photographs and prints, as well as drawings and illustrations, many of these items have never been shown in public before.

The Spirit of Jem book cover

Dust jacket for The Spirit of Jem, lithograph

In July a selection of over 40 works, curated by Colin Cruise, will be exhibited in ‘Figure and Ground’ at Amgueuddfa Cymru National Museum of Wales, Cardiff.  The show opens on 13th July and runs until 24th November 2013. You can also catch the exhibition at the School of Art, Aberystwyth, between the 17th February and the 28th of March 2014.

PH290 a young man leaping

A young man leaping, silver print


The fully illustrated book, published by Sansom & Co., Bristol, which accompanies the exhibition has essays on photography by Simon Pierse, on prints by Robert Meyrick and Harry Heuser and on drawing by Colin Cruise.

The project has received financial support from the Hargreaves and Ball Trust, the Derek Williams Trust and Aberystwyth University.

Illustration to Spirit of Jem

I wedged myself into a fork and waited…, ink drawing

PH285 Two semi-nude men at the beach

Two semi-nude male figures in the Men’s Enclosure, Highgate Pond, silver print, c.1935


 Finisterre, lithograph

The book:

The exhibition:

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