Prunella Clough: Unconsidered Wastelands at the Osborne Samuel Gallery
Following the success of such acclaimed exhibitions as Nine Abstract Artists – Revisited (2005) and retrospectives of the works of Edward Wadsworth (2006) and Keith Vaughan (2007 and 2012), the Osborne Samuel Gallery is proud to present yet another retrospective collection of an acclaimed British artist.
Unconsidered Wastelands includes over 70 paintings and works on paper by Prunella Clough, one of the most prominent artists of post-war Britain. The pieces on show are both contributed by the Osbourne Samuel Gallery and from private collectors, including some from some of Clough’s closest friends. As a result, this is the most thorough study on her work since the Tate Gallery’s own 2007 exhibition about the subject. The pieces on show are so versatile that they include works as early as Cabbage (1949) and River Landscape (1956), alongside some of her later creations, such as Wire & Rods (1979) and Still Life with Mugs (1988).
“We found ourselves with about 70 works on paper here. So, it turned out to be almost a retrospective,” one of the directors of the gallery, Gordon Samuel recalls. “It turned from ten we owned to 20, as we started meeting various people, and it became a really exciting exhibition. And I thought if we got this many, it doesn’t matter if we borrowed things and they are not for sale, [since] it makes the exhibition more comprehensive.” The fact of the matter is that only a few of the pieces included are borrowed, and more than 90% of the exhibition is for sale.
The beautiful oil canvases are simply mesmerising on their own, but they are truly impressive in their versatility. Unconsidered Wastelands is a great tribute to an artist who never stopped creating. Upon admiring the exhibition, which covers decades of art, it becomes clear just how versatile of a person Prunella was. Some of the works differ drastically from one another, speaking volumes of the change that occurs in the perceptions of the world through the years.
So, is there a title piece? “I love the early ones, but now I find myself looking at the late ones, like Chinese Chequers,” says Samuel. “They are wonderful works but people don’t know enough about them. They think about works from the 40s and 50s really. And there is terrific work which she carried on doing.” Unconsidered Wastelands is the ideal place to admire that work.
Photos: Osborne Samuel
Unconsidered Wasteland is at the Osborne Samuel Gallery from 16th April until 16th May 2015, for further information or to book visit here.