The RWA appears to be changing its spots…. this spring’s Bert Irwin show was an absolute knock out. It had a few of Irwin’s signature prints, but not the biggest or the best. Most ( and much more) impressively it had some delicious, large, colourful late Irwin paintings, as well as those by the American contemporaries like Pollock that influenced him or other British artists like Gillian Ayres who were equally influenced by the American abstract expressionists. I love abstract expressionism. I love the colour, the playfullnness, the use of new contemporary materials. Matte acrylics; fluid forms, squeezes as well as , or instead of brushes. Its all lovely. My problem is that the Americans at least were mostly men and incredibly sexist. Helen Frankenthaler was more or less the lone female in the whole movement. Bert Irwin was rooted in London, and his work reads a bit like a tube map in terms of titles. The colours are sumptuous.
Here are some images from the RWA show: