Alan Reynolds

Summer: Young September’s Cornfield

1954

Medium
Oil paint on hardboard
Dimensions
Support: 1022 x 1549 mm
frame: 1315 x 1845 x 100 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Presented by the Trustees of the Chantrey Bequest 1956
Reference
T00105

Display caption

Although Reynolds has worked in a completely abstract style since 1960, he initially built his reputation as a landscape painter. Summer was painted between the end of August and the last week of September 1954 and is one of four works on the theme of the Seasons painted by Reynolds that year. Spring is in the National Gallery of Victoria in Melbourne, Australia and Winter is in the Fleischmann Collection, Pittsburgh, U.S.A. Autumn is in a private collection in Britain.

Gallery label, August 2004

Catalogue entry

T00105 SUMMER: YOUNG SEPTEMBER'S CORNFIELD 1954

Inscr. ‘Reynolds 54’ b.r.
Oil on hardboard, 40 1/4×61 (102×155).
Chantrey Purchase from the artist 1956.
Exh: Giovani Pittori, Galleria Nazionale d'Arte Moderna, Rome, April–May 1955 (81), Palais des Beaux-Arts, Brussels, June–July 1955, and Musée National d'Art Moderne, Paris, October–November 1955; The Four Seasons, Redfern Gallery, March 1956 (2, repr. in colour), as ‘Summer’; R.A., 1956 (142).
Lit: Robert Melville, ‘Alan Reynolds’ in Studio, CL, 1955, pp.112–15, repr. p.113 (reprinted in exh. cat. The Four Seasons, Redfern Gallery, 1956, with colour reproductions of each of the four large paintings).

The artist wrote (1 September 1956) that ‘Summer’ was painted between the end of August and the last week of September, and it is one of four large paintings on the theme of the Seasons painted during 1954 and exhibited at the Redfern Gallery in 1956. ‘Spring’ belongs to the National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne; ‘Autumn’ is in the possession of Richard Attenborough; and ‘Winter’ was purchased for the Fleischmann Collection, Pittsburgh, U.S.A.

A smaller oil painting ‘Young September's Cornfield’ was also shown at the Redfern Gallery, 1956 (9), and is a preliminary oil study for the Tate picture. Similar oil studies exist for the other three Seasons, and among the ninety or so watercolours and drawings also shown at the same exhibition at least eight (Nos.18, 47, 52, 53, 61, 63, 68 and 82) are directly related to T00105.

Published in:
Mary Chamot, Dennis Farr and Martin Butlin, The Modern British Paintings, Drawings and Sculpture, London 1964, II

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