Dorothy Mead (1928–1975) was a student of David Bomberg at the Borough Polytechnic and was one of the founder members of the Borough Group alongside Dennis Creffield, Miles Richmond, and Cliff Holden. Mead's work was collected by the Arts Council who included her in an exhibition of '6 Young Painters' in 1964. Alongside Mead were figures such as Bridget Riley and David Hockney. Mead also became the first female president of the London Group, and was well respected as a teacher at colleges such as Goldsmith's in London. By the early 1970s her work was in the Tate collection. Her life was cut tragically short in 1975, she was just 46 years old.
Our exhibition is a retrospective of works from the artist's estate. We begin with her visceral and vibrant early landscapes which show an early debt to Bomberg. We include her self-portraits and early figure paintings that bear comparison to Kossoff and Auerbach - fellow alumni of Bomberg's classes (if not actual members of the Borough Group). By the 1960s we see an artist moving towards a softer style and working on more complex multi-figure works that seem both steeped in art history but also uniquely hers. Finally, there are hints at what turns she might have taken had she lived longer including a mysterious and beautiful small abstract. Despite the close links to Bomberg, she maintained a style that was her own; always experimental, always challenging and always evolving.
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Gallery opening times:
Monday – Friday 9:30-6pm
Saturday 11-4pm (excluding Saturdays in August and bank holiday weekends)