KEITH GRANT (1930 - )
Seven Times of Day
• Gouache and charcoal on paper (17.5 x 22.5cm)
• Signed lower right, and dated July 1965
Keith Grant combines both abstract and figurative concerns in his paintings. In this small work, there is visible influence of the landscapes of the North he loves and knows so well, including what seems to be the form of rocks, icebergs, mountains and the sea’s horizon. Through its division into seven discrete but contiguous components, Seven Times of Day seeks to express a natural symbolism of transience and transformation.
Keith Grant, born in Liverpool in 1930, attended Willesden Art School and later the Royal College of Art between the years 1955 to 1958 where he came under the influence of neo-romantic painters such as Paul Nash and Graham Sutherland. His teachers included Carel Weight and Colin Hayes and it was the latter who initially encouraged Keith to travel to Iceland. He found it 'magical and enchanting' and so began what was to become the central theme of his life and work. He has always held that an awareness of landscape is of primary importance, and ever since his first visit to Iceland, his main focus has been the remote and elemental regions of the North. His love for these landscapes is summed up in his statement: “It is in the North and only in the North, that I sense the value of my life.”
From the early 1980s, Grant made the most of opportunities to explore contrasting climes. He was invited to French Guiana in 1982 to paint the launch of the Ariane Rocket, and the resulting works were exhibited the following year at the Paris International Air Show. The successful reception of these works led to visits to Sarawak in 1984, Cameroon in 1986, the Negev Desert in Israel in 1988, and later to Venezuela in 1992.
From the end of the 1980s, Grant began to hold a number of significant one-man exhibitions in London, notably at Cadogan Contemporary from 1989, the Crane Kalman Gallery in 1989, the Gillian Jason Gallery in 1990 and Cassian de Vere-Cole in 1994. He also showed at Roehampton Institute in 1992, where he was Head of Art, and The Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge in 1994 where he was given a retrospective entitled ‘Fire and Ice'. Not exclusively a landscape artist, Grant was commissioned to paint HRH Prince Andrew in 1994. Examples of his work can be seen in the Fitzwilliam Museum, the Victoria and Albert Museum, the Arts Council Collection, the Government Art Collection, Leamington Spa Art Gallery & Museum, North Lincolnshire Museums Service, Rochdale Arts and Heritage Service, the Lakeland Arts Trust, the Royal College of Art, Portsmouth Museums and Visitor Services, and the National Galleries of Iceland, New Zealand, Australia and Guyana.
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