Ian BreakwellThe Walking Man Diary 1975-8

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Artwork details

Ian Breakwell (1943‑2005)
The Walking Man Diary
Date 1975-8
Medium11 works on panel, photographs, gelatin silver print on paper, graphite and ink
Dimensionsdisplayed: 1233 x 6159 x 19 mm frame 1: 230 x 275 x 19 mm frame 2: 224 x 282 x 32 mm frame 3: 1232 x 727 x 19 mm frame 4: 1232 x 389 x 19 mm frame 5: 1232 x 953 x 19 mm frame 6: 1232 x 575 x 19 mm frame 7: 1232 x 577 x 19 mm frame 8: 1232 x 1
Acquisition Purchased 2001
Not on display


Breakwell is one of a group of radical British artists who, in the 1960s, challenged the conventional orthodoxy of modernism. The results of this challenge were the ‘dematerialisation’ of the art object from its traditional, commercially marketable format as painting or sculpture and its reconstitution as text, document, photograph or other cheap, reproducible or even insubstantial material. The modernist notion of expressive creativity was rejected and strategies of detachment were adopted. Many artists of this generation used the techniques of the social scientist, documenting their lives or the lives of those around them using photography, recorded notes and journals.

Breakwell began writing a Continuous Diary in 1965. In this document, maintained until 1985, he recorded incidental details of his life including carefully observed moments of absurdity, pathos, incongruity, alienation and mundanity… (read more)

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