David Annesley b. 1936
T01347 UNTITLED 1968
Painted aluminium and steel, 83¼ x 76¼ x 24 (211.5 x 194 x 61).
Presented by Alistair McAlpine 1971.
Exh: Waddington Galleries, November-December 1968 (as ‘A 1968/7-1’); The Alistair McAlpine Gift, Tate Gallery, June-August 1971 (9, repr. in colour).
Lit: Anne Seymour, in catalogue of The Alistair McAlpine Gift, 1971, pp. 37–44.
Among painters Annesley acknowledges a considerable debt to Kenneth Noland. What attracted Annesley about his work was the way he would take a given structure and then work with colour inside it ‘in a very non-compositional way’. Annesley has also felt a close affinity with the way Albers makes use of a formal structure over and over again simply ‘to free himself in colour’.
In 1966 Annesley stayed for a month with Noland in Bennington, Vermont, having exhaustive discussions on colour in general and Noland’s in particular. When he did the triangular pieces of 1968 (such as T01347) he had already seen pale, soft-coloured paintings by Noland though there were also personal reasons for this new approach to colour. For one thing soft colour had tended to be dismissed before. For another it made for a more fluid image. It was now apparent that far from blurring the image, keeping the colour values together gave added intensity to the exchange between colours. As the colour was more controlled it was therefore more active and although it reached the spectator softly it continued to intensify.
In the last fabricated sculpture Annesley did (before returning temporarily to painting in 1969) he used a series of the same images but painted different colours— on the Albers principle. The colour change was sufficient to produce a new image.
T01347 is one of an edition of three.
Published in The Tate Gallery Report 1970–1972, London 1972.