press release

From the mid 1940s to the 1960s, Graham Sutherland was the most famous artist in Britain. He was a household name and a society face. His style - tortured, spiky, earthy coloured - was visibly influenced by Picasso and Matisse, yet unmistakably British, harking back to the great landscape painters of the early nineteenth century.

In celebration of his centenary, Bernard Jacobson Gallery will be showing works from throughout the artist's career.

Sutherland is perhaps best known for the immense tapestry of Christ in Glory (completed 1962) in Coventry Cathedral, although he is also famous for the landscapes of Pembrokeshire and the South of France (where he lived for a good deal of his life) as well as for portraits of the key figures of the day - from Winston Churchill to Somerset Maugham. During the war years he was employed as an Official War Artist to record the effects of bombing, and his work matured as he brought together his passionate sense of landscape and modern awareness of violence in paintings of the Blitz.

Sutherland's career began in the unlikely setting of the railways, where he trained as an engineer. His meticulous graphic work and preparatory drawings hark back to this time and remained a distinguishing element of his work throughout his life. Apart from paintings and graphic art, his work included ceramics, poster and stage costume design.

Although a great friend of Francis Bacon, and a strong influence on the younger artist's work, Sutherland's fame was eventually eclipsed by Bacon and his popularity dwindled. Celebratory centenary exhibitions running throughout 2003 will allow us to reassess the talent of this giant of twentieth century British art.

Sutherland exhibitions 2003 25 Feb - 2 March Graham Sutherland at Olympia - retrospective featuring over 100 important works 6-29 March - Bernard Jacobson Gallery Centenary Exhibition 15 March - 11 May - Pallant House, Chichester - display from the collection April - December - Tate Britain - display from the collection.


Graham Sutherland Centenary Exhibition