A significant private collection – The Property of a Gentleman - is at the heart of an exciting assemblage of Modern British and Irish Paintings and Sculpture on offer in Tennants Spring Fine Art sale on 24th & 25th March. With the likes of Graham Sutherland, William Gear, Markey Robinson and Michael Ayrton on offer, the sale brings an important representation of Modern British & Irish Art to North Yorkshire.
However, the centrepiece of the collection is the imposing ‘Installation: Contrasts in Red, Black and White’ by St. Ives abstract artist Sir Terry Frost RA (1915-2003), one of the most significant figures in 20th century British art. Painted in 2002-3, it is the culmination of his life’s work; the piece assembles together all the Cornish-inspired motifs and themes that ran through his work – the sun, the moon, the sea, boats, harbours, and spirals.
Comprising more than thirty interconnected canvases and eight coloured free-standing blocks, Frost created the installation for his major exhibition at Tate St. Ives in 2003 - Terry Frost, Black, White and Red. In a new move Frost created a dynamic work that the viewer could interact with, step inside, and move within. Speaking about this installation, Tate St. Ives’ Director, Susan Daniel-McElroy, is quoted in 'The Last Picture Show - Working at Tate St Ives with Terry Frost' a 2003 article in The Guardian by Jon Pratty: ‘I think it’s really fresh work – with the vigour of a young artist. It has a dynamic that’s totally unexpected, because looking at Contrasts, you find yourself within the experience, and that’s not happened before in Terry’s work’.
Contrasts is being sold with an estimated hammer price of £40,000 - £60,000 (plus buyers’ premium & ARR). As well as having been exhibited at Tate St. Ives, the work has been exhibited in the Tate Britain show Terry Frost in 2003-4, and in The Royal Academy in 2004. Contrasts will be on public view in Tennants Leyburn salerooms from 19th – 24th March, during the viewing for their Spring Fine Art Sale.
A further work of art in the same sale has also been exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1984 – Singapore Girl on a Swing by Sydney Harpley RA (1927-1992). This graceful life size bronze is an important work by the British sculptor, who studied under John Skeaping at the Royal College of Art. Harpley built a widely lauded body of work around the single female form – sculpting dancers, acrobats, and girls on swings and hammocks, all infused with a sense of romanticism and movement. Girl on a Swing is being sold with an estimated hammer price of £30,000-40,000 (plus buyers’ premium & ARR).