Robert Medley Isphahan 1974

Artwork details

Artist
Robert Medley 1905–1994
Title
Isphahan
Date 1974
Medium Acrylic paint on canvas
Dimensions Support: 1575 x 1524 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition Presented by the trustees of the artist's estate 1995
Reference
T06981
Not on display

Technique and condition

The painting was executed on a single of piece of medium weight cotton duck canvas, which was stretched around an expandable stretcher and attached with steel staples at the sides and reverse. The canvas was primed with an acrylic gesso after stretching.

The paint is an artists' quality acrylic emulsion paint and has been applied exclusively by brush. The palette is very limited in colour, with a beige/tan background and only a light yellow, pink, blue and black paint used to mark out the various patterns. The surface of the painting is fairly uneven, as a result of the artist using a paste-like paint which has retained the texture of his brushmarks and of the straight and raised edges characteristic of using masking tape. In addition there were some fairly major changes in composition during the execution of the work. Although the background colour covers these previous outlines, the texture of these areas are still apparent. The paint is generally opaque and fairly matt, although the level of gloss varies over the painting's surface. There are also a number of light blue paint drips on the back of the canvas.

The painting is in very good condition, with no sign of cracking or discoloration in any of the colours. There is some sign of previous mould growth on the back of canvas, especially along bottom half, but this appears not to be active. The original battens which surrounded the painting on acquisition have been replaced with an L-section frame of similar look and a backboard was attached, so that the painting is now offered far greater protection against future damage.

Tom Learner
August 1997

About this artwork