Artist: Islwyn Watkins. British (1938-2018)
Date: Mid/late 20th century
Medium: Oil on canvas.
Size: Largest 91cm x 53cm
Details: Signed verso
Islwyn Watkins (1938-2018) Modern British abstract diptych.
A wonderful, calming pair very much in the style of Post war St Ives abstraction. This diptych is a combination of painted and constructed techniques. The white on white is beautifully broken/dissected by the wooden trim windows.
Both pieces are signed on the back at the top and bottom of the frame. This could imply that the artist and viewer might choose which way to hang each piece. A nice, sculptural touch I thought.
Islwyn Watkins was a significant post war artist who exhibited here in the UK and in America. He was a key member of The Welsh Group and his work is held by The Welsh Arts Council.
Islwyn Watkins (1938-2018) was a Welsh painter, printmaker, sculptor and performance artist. He was born in Tonypandy, Glamorgan and studied at Cardiff College of Art in the mid 1950’s. He went on to teach in Hertfordshire and Leeds before further study and teaching posts in Wisconsin, America, 1965-6. He also taught at Ravenscroft upon his return to the UK and attended Printmaking classes at Hornsey College. Islwyn Watkins exhibited in Wales, London, and throughout the UK and America. He had solo shows at The University of Birmingham and New Art Gallery in Rugby. He organized and took part in political ‘Happenings’ in London and the US alongside lifelong friend and collaborator, Jeff Nuttall who was the Author of ‘Bomb Culture’ 1968. Both friends became members of ‘Group H’ instigating many political ‘Happenings’ and installations during the late 60’s. Islwyn Watkins was a key member of ‘The Welsh Group’ of artists going on to become chair of the organization. Watkins was influenced by the post war St Ives artists and by the German émigré collagist, Kurt Schwitters. He was also an expert in studio ceramics and early English pottery.