Jerwood Foundation

Graham Crowley (b. 1950)

Yellow Rockery, 2003

  • Details

    Copyright Graham Crowley, courtesy of Beaux Arts

  • Medium

    oil on canvas

  • Dimensions

    61 x 71 cm. (24 x 28 in.)

  • Provenance

    Beaux Arts, London, where acquired by Robert Devereux in January 2004.
    The Robert Devereux Collection of Post-War British Art, part 2; Sotheby’s, London, 4 November 2010, lot 219, where purchased.

  • Literature

    Collection Catalogue, Jerwood Collection, London 2012 p.31.

  • On Display

    Jerwood Gallery, Hastings, Room 1

Graham Crowley painted a series of works in the 1990s and 2000s inspired by the landscape near his home in rural Western Ireland. Speaking about his choice of subject matter for these works, Crowley said: ‘landscape is a genre that is inescapable; you have to address it. It’s like gravity.’ The luminous, graphic style of Yellow Rockery is typical of Crowley’s landscape painting. Painted over a bright yellow ground, he has used a limited colour palette to describe the scene. The traditional subject of houses within the landscape feels familiar, but the lurid colours give the work an other-worldly feel.
Crowley was shortlisted for the Jerwood Painting Prize in 2002, alongside Pamela Golden, Nicky Hoberman, Callum Innes, Lisa Milroy and Paul Morrison. He was an artist selector for the Jerwood Drawing Prize in 1994, and two of his drawings were included in the exhibition Drawn Together: Artist as Selector at Jerwood Gallery.

Born in Romford, Essex, Crowley studied at St Martin’s School of Art, and then at the Royal College of Art. His early work explored abstraction, and in the early 1980s he began to focus on domestic objects and household interiors. Later, landscape became Crowley’s principal focus. Crowley has described his exploration of different themes and styles in his artworks as his ‘stylistic infidelity.’

Crowley has held several significant teaching posts, most recently as Professor of Painting at the Royal College of Art. He was artist in residence at St Edmund Hall, Oxford, Dulwich Picture Gallery, London, and held the Riverscape International Drawing Residency in Cleveland. Crowley was a John Moores prize winner in 1987 and 2006, shortlisted for the Jerwood Painting Prize in 2002, and awarded the ING Purchase Prize at The Discerning Eye exhibition in 2004.