Industrial Landscape

MERLYN EVANS (1910-1973) Biography

Industrial Landscape (Wales, 1952)

Oil on canvas
Signed and dated 52 lower left

Dimensions

81.50cm high
175.50cm wide
(32.09 inches high)
(69.09 inches wide)
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Provenance

The Artist's Estate; to 2006

Literature

R H Wilenski, Contemporary English Painting, Daily Telegraph, 20 March 1953
The Sphere, 27 February 1954, pages 301-5, illustrated page 301
Hampshire Telegraph and Post, 18th November 1955
Mel Gooding, Merlyn Evans 1910-1973, A Retrospective Exhibition, Mayor Gallery & Redfern Gallery, Merlyn Evans, London February-March 1988, page 20, catalogue number 26
Mel Gooding, Merlyn Evans, Cameron & Hollis, Moffat 2010, page 116, illustrated double page spread page 122-3

Exhibition History

London, Leicester Galleries, Merlyn Evans, New Paintings, March 1953, number 10
Sao Paulo, Museum of Modern Art, II Bienal, 1953-54, British Section, number 88
Bedford, and touring to Eastbourne, Lincoln, Hastings, Portsmouth, Huddersfield, Middlesbrough, Swansea and Cardiff, Four Modern Painters, an exhibition of Works by Merlyn Evans, William Gear, Ceri Richards and Robert Medley, 1955-6, number 8
London, Whitechapel Gallery, Merlyn Evans - Paintings, drawings and etchings, October-November 1956, number 45
London, Mayor Gallery & Redfern Gallery, Merlyn Evans 1910-1973, A Retrospective Exhibition, February-March 1988, number 26 (illustrated in the catalogue)

Description / Expertise

Merlyn Evans was a major contributor to the Surrealist movement in Britain and one of the greatest abstract political painters and print makers of the era surrounding the 2nd World War. Born in Cardiff of Welsh parents, he was brought up in Scotland and enrolled at the Glasgow School of Art in 1927. Three years later, he began exhibiting at the Royal Scottish Academy and when the Royal College of Art offered him a scholarship, he moved to London where he showed predominantly at the Leicester Galleries and the London Gallery. He also contributed to the major International Surrealist show of 1936.

In 1942, Evans was enlisted as a soldier and spent four years in active service fighting in Africa, Syria and Italy. After he was discharged from the army, he was still very much emotionally and politically involved in the prevailing conflict. R. H. Wilenski explains how until 1953: The majority of his pictures were in the nature of exasperated records of his personal sense of futile sacrifice and effort and equally futile robot justice and robot repressions in the temporal world around him.(1)


(1)R. H. Wilenski, Merlyn Evans – paintings, drawings and etchings, Whitechapel Art Gallery 1956, page 12