David Hawkins / Painting of the Week

Painting of the Week: 59

Painting of the Week: 59

Jonathan Armstrong (1893-1973), Daphnis and Chloe, c. 1927, gouache on board, 57.5 x 77 cm

This remarkable, musical and fantastical landscape cries out for exploration; but to start with the pink cliffs or the green?! Drawn to abstraction and powerfully influenced by the surrealism of the de Chirico school, Sussex-born John Armstrong (1893–1973) was also a serious symbolist painter. He returned again and again to the themes of Icarus and the Tocsin (an outsized alarm bell), warning humankind of its perilous direction in the nuclear age. Needless to say, he was deeply troubled when they put a man on the moon.

John Armstrong: The Complete PaintingsFor a more in-depth, informed and de-pithed view of this strongly independent and imaginative artist, maybe you should check out John Armstrong: The Complete Paintings. In fact, you definitely should. DH

Click here for an enlarged view of the painting.


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