Marlborough Fine Art presents Scorched Earth, a solo exhibition of new works by British artist Hughie O’Donoghue.
O’Donoghue often uses historic events and figures from art history as a point of departure in his work. In this exhibition, the artist questions the legacy of Vincent Van Gogh in our collective cultural memory.
O’Donoghue’s new paintings revisit and reimagine the imagery observed and invented by Van Gogh as he struggled to make a lucid vision manifest while his health deteriorated. Although personally familiar with Arles, St. Remy and the setting of the Saint-Paul asylum where Van Gogh was a patient, O’Donoghue has chosen to situate these paintings in his own immediate environment: the enclosed fields beside his studio. The subject therefore is brought into O’Donoghue’s own territory and field of vision.
On show are new large scale paintings which reimagine some of the seminal late works of Van Gogh, in particular the lost painting The Painter on the Road to Tarascon but also The Wheatfield with a Reaper and Enclosed Field with a Peasant, both shown in London as part of The Real Van Gogh at The Royal Academy 2010. The encounter with these two paintings sowed the imaginative seeds in O’Donoghue that have led to this new body of works.
Hughie O’Donoghue lives and works in London and County Mayo, Ireland. He was elected member of the Royal Academy of Arts in 2009 and has been an artist-in-residence at the National Gallery, London and St John’s College, Oxford. His work has been exhibited widely in Britain (including solo exhibitions at Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge; Imperial War Museum, London; Leighton House Museum, London and Whitworth Art Gallery, Manchester.