Wilhelmina Barns-Graham
Glacier Crystal, Grindelwald 1950

Artwork details

Glacier Crystal, Grindelwald
Date 1950
Medium Oil paint on canvas
Dimensions Frame: 674 x 777 x 74 mm
support: 514 x 609 mm
Acquisition Presented by the Contemporary Art Society 1964
On display at Tate Britain
Room: 1950

Display caption

This is one of a number of works painted following the artist's visit to the Grindelwald Glacier in Switzerland in 1948. There Barns-Graham had direct experience of the massive and fantastic shapes of the glacier, of its light, and of its contrasts between solidity and glass-like transparency. This led her to attempt in her painting to combine multiple views, 'from above, through and all round, as a bird flies, a total experience'. She acheived this effect with a combination of sharply drawn line, and intersecting and overlapping shapes, recording the cool colours of the snow, ice and sky. Barns-Grahams's later work became more abstract but she has frequently derived inspiration from the rhythms and sculptural forms found in nature.

September 2004

About this artwork