Exhibition | British Art from Whistler to World War Two | at | Santa Barbara | Art Week

British Art from Whistler to World War Two

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Sunday, 18 September 2016 to Sunday, 8 January 2017
Adrian Paul Allinson, "Spring in the Abruzzi," n.d. Oil on canvas. SBMA, Gift of Mary and Will Richeson, Jr.

Curated by art historian Peyton Skipwith and drawn entirely from the permanent collection of the Santa Barbara Museum of Art, this selection of some 50 paintings, drawings, and sculptures presents an overview of British art from around 1890 through 1945. Essentially, the exhibition presents the story of modernism unique to England: the persistence of figuration even as the lessons from continental avant-garde practice were absorbed. Cubism, Surrealism, Suprematism, Expressionism, and Vorticism signaled a definitive rupture with the tradition of representational content as commonly understood and a decided move towards abstraction. Artists represented include three of the founders of the New English Art Club: Walter Sickert, Philip Wilson Steer, and Paul Maitland, who established an alternative exhibition space to the traditional spaces of the Royal Academy in the 1890s. Richly represented are those artists who attended the Slade School in the heady years right before World War I, including James Innes, Christopher Nevinson, Adrian Allinson, and Stanley Spencer. The show takes the visitor through the World Wars and the ultimate absorption of continental modernism in England with representative works by Wyndam Lewis, Paul Nash, John Tunnard, and Eileen Agar and concludes with the biomorphic abstractions of Graham Sutherland and Henry Moore.

Image Credit: Adrian Paul Allinson, Spring in the Abruzzi, n.d. Oil on canvas. SBMA, Gift of Mary and Will Richeson, Jr.

 

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