British Constructivism: The Catherine Petitgas Collection

British Constructivism Pallant House

A display of sculptures, reliefs and constructions by Victor Pasmore’s contemporaries in the British Constructivist movement, including Kenneth and Mary Martin, Anthony Hill, Norman Dilworth and John Ernest, drawn from the Petitgas Collection.

The British Constructivists were an unofficial group of abstract artists with shared interests who were inspired in part by the ideals of Russian Constructivism. In 1951 British artist Kenneth Martin published an article entitled ‘Abstract Art’ in the publication Broadsheet No. 1: Devoted to Abstract Art in which he described the work of this emerging circle of abstract artists. He characterised the new constructed work as an ‘object which is real and not illusional in that it sets out to represent no object outside [itself], but to contain within itself the force of its own nature.’

During the 1950s, the British Constructivists organised a series of exhibitions. These included Abstract Paintings, Sculptures, Mobiles, at the A.I.A Gallery, London in 1951 and during the following year three-weekend exhibitions held at 22 Fitzroy Street; the London studio of artist Adrian Heath. Unframed paintings, reliefs, collages, sculptures and mobiles were placed at different heights so that the space of the whole studio was animated. This environmental approach to the installation and their shared belief that their art was closely allied to the forms and materials of modern architecture was central to their contribution to the seminal exhibition This is Tomorrow held at the Whitechapel Art Gallery, London in 1956.

In the late 1950s and 1960s, they continued to exhibit their work and established the group’s central position within the development of the British avant-garde. By 1960, a new generation of artists including Peter Lowe, Gillian Ware, Norman Dilworth and Jeffrey Steele joined and became closely associated with the group’s ideas.

Duration 11 March 2017 - 11 June 2017
Times Tuesday-Saturday: 10am – 5pm Thursday: 10am – 8pm Sunday/Bank Holidays: 11am – 5pm Mondays: Closed
Cost Adult £10
Venue Pallant House Gallery
Address 9 North Pallant, Chichester, West Sussex, PO19 1TJ
Contact 01243 774557 / /