Les Amis de Beauford Delaney is partnering with the Wells International Foundation (WIF) to take the Beauford Delaney: Resonance of Form and Vibration of Color exhibition to the U.S.!

We value your support!

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(All or part of your gift through WIF may qualify as a charitable deductible in the U.S.)

Saturday, January 12, 2019

Time Out: A Contemplative Exercise with Beauford's Art

In an article entitled "Double Vision: Beauford Delaney and Ted Joans in France," art historian and curator Karima Boudou makes two insightful statements about Beauford's art:

"A Delaney painting is a poem rather than a picture. It portrays an emotion called up by a scene, and not the scene itself in all its elaborate complexity."

" If you spend time in front of a Delaney painting and watch, figures and objects come in and out of focus, just as if everything in the world is elusive. The reason for this ambiguity in Delaney’s work is that a Delaney painting is not simply a depiction of a new way of seeing; it is, rather, the visual articulation of a metaphysical state."

I invite you to take some time out from your busy schedule and look at the images of several of Beauford's paintings below, keeping these two statements in mind. Give yourself a wonderful break from the hustle and bustle of your daily routine and contemplate what you see and feel!

Rosa Parks
(1967) oil on canvas
© Estate of Beauford Delaney
by permission of Derek L. Spratley, Esquire,
Court Appointed Administrator
Image courtesy of Michael Rosenfeld Gallery, LLC, New York, NY

Can Fire in the Park
(1946) Oil on canvas
© Estate of Beauford Delaney
by permission of Derek L. Spratley, Esquire,
Court Appointed Administrator

The Eye
(1965) Oil on canvas
Private Collection
© Discover Paris
© Estate of Beauford Delaney
by permission of Derek L. Spratley, Esquire,
Court Appointed Administrator

Dark Rapture (a portrait of James Baldwin)
(1941) Oil on canvas
© Estate of Beauford Delaney
by permission of Derek L. Spratley, Esquire,
Court Appointed Administrator

Untitled
Watercolor on paper
Signed and dated lower left in red ink, "Beauford Delaney 1971"
Photo courtesy of Case Antiques
© Estate of Beauford Delaney
by permission of Derek L. Spratley, Esquire,
Court Appointed Administrator

Café Scene
(1966) Oil on canvas
© Estate of Beauford Delaney
by permission of Derek L. Spratley, Esquire,
Court Appointed Administrator

Portrait of Vasilli Pikoula
(1970) Oil on canvas
© Estate of Beauford Delaney
by permission of Derek L. Spratley, Esquire,
Court Appointed Administrator

Saturday, January 5, 2019

Solliès-Toucas


The images below represent two paintings by Beauford that bare the (misspelled) name of the French town of Solliès-Toucas. Beauford's friends, Richard Olney and Bernard Hassell, owned a home there.

Sollis Toucan 
(1963) Oil on canvas
Signed, dated and titled, on the stretcher
16 3/8 x 13 inches
© Estate of Beauford Delaney,
by permission of Derek L. Spratley, Esquire,
Court Appointed Administrator

Soullis Toucas
(Beauford's gift to Roy Freeman)
Oil on canvas
© Estate of Beauford Delaney,
by permission of Derek L. Spratley, Esquire,
Court Appointed Administrator

In the book entitled The Gourmand's Way, we find descriptions of the property where Beauford created these works. It overlooked the valley of the Gapeau River, where

"...cherry orchards transformed the valley into a blanket of white blossom in early April, the ground of the hillsides formed a tapestry of the blues and violets of flowering wild thyme, punctuated by bushes of wild rosemary..."

Author Justin Spring describes Olney and Hassell's home as a "ruined shepherd's cottage," a "one-bedroom home" featuring "a combination kitchen and hearth as its main room." He says that the terrace was the place where guests gathered and describes a "dining table tucked into a combination of sun awning and grape arbor" there. Olney decorated the terrace with a string of lights and planted flowers and herbs on parterres below. The house had a southeastern exposure, which provided for plenty of sun most of the year. The surrounding land consisted of seven acres of olive groves.

Throughout much of the 1960s (the period when at least one of the above paintings was created), there was no road leading to the property. The house had no running water and no phone. Cooking was done on a gas ring. The garden housed "a walk-in aviary and chicken run, a gently dripping fountain, a persimmon tree..."

Over time, improvements to the property included the addition of a fireplace in the kitchen, a driveway and parking area, and a wine cellar.

Guests would commonly stay 1-2 weeks at a time and were expected to contribute to the functioning of the household - foraging for wild herbs and vegetables, preparing meals, stacking wood were all activities in which they could expect to partake.

This was the world where biographer David Leeming says that "Beauford painted a great deal, and, as always, enjoyed the sun..."