9th of February - (extended until) 3rd of May 2008
Gallery4allarts opened a new exhibition to celebrate Liverpool's Capital of Culture year:
'Fanchon Fröhlich – retrospective exhibition'
Paintings, etchings, drawings, philosophical writings and "Creative Phenomena"
@The Grange, 36 Ullet Road, Liverpool, L17 3BP
Press release. Please, click here to read printable version.
Read Jeremy Reed's "Neural Supernovae" about Fanchon Fröhlich.
Private view: 9th February, 4.00-8.30pm accompanied by live music from 'FRAKTURE'
Curator: Nicole Bartos
Venue: The Grange, 36 Ullet Road, Liverpool L17 3BP
Open: Monday to Saturday
2pm-6pm or by appointment.
Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org or 07756912911
Many thanks to: The Grange, Jeremy Reed, Frakture, artinliverpool.com
"Neural Supernovae"- by Jeremy Reed
"Fanchon Fröhlich’s paintings are essentially neural, in that their explosive delivery of colour maps out work that takes its direction from inner landscapes given the form of abstract configuration. With a background in linguistic philosophy and science, Fanchon began painting at the Liverpool College of Art, largely as a figurative artist, before her seminal involvement with the etcher S.W. Hayter’s Atelier 17 in Paris, an experience that radically challenged her formative experiments with figurative painting, and transformed her into the liberated proponent of abstract expressionism who we know today. Only a small number of Fanchon’s early works have survived, but amongst them is the achingly sensitive portrait of her late husband, the physicist, Herbert Frohlich, shown here, as a superb example of her ability to bring the complex inner thinker to light, so that we the viewer are confronted directly with the man’s characteristic preoccupation with thought processes, as his means of connecting with the quantum universe by way of physics.
Part of Fanchon’s greatness lies in her ability to continually reinvent herself as an artist. Her writings on philosophy, science and art, her immense European culture, that also takes in the work of the American abstract expressionists, as well as the Japanese influences on her art, initiated by a period of work with Goto San in Kyoto, have all combined over the years, to the continuous and lively remaking of her art as the dominant expression of a life committed to imaginative creativity.
In 1991, Fanchon always in search of the new founded the Collective Phenomena, an art movement characterised by having several painters working abstractly together on a surface that takes its force from concentrated spontaneity within the participants, the activity often being performed live to the accompaniment of Lawrence Ball’s extempore piano music. The work of the Collective Phenomena, beautiful, disturbing, powerfully conflicting and neurologically menacing, is integral to the provocatively challenging retrospective of an artist at last coming up for serious consideration as a major painter.
Fanchon’s connections to Liverpool too, as the concealed city buried in the subtext to her art, forms another important aspect of her creative growth as an artist, right from her early years of studying at the Liverpool College of Art, to assimilating the city’s indigenous culture into the textural density of her work as place, no matter how abstractly overwritten. Her work, always celebratory in tone and driving in energy, is the unstoppable example of an artist working with courage at the edge, and one who is prepared to accept all experience as subject matter for art, and to compound the risks proposed by pioneering into adventurous experimentation. I would point for example to the painting Visual Music V11 Lyrical Moon, a collaboration between Fanchon and Sylvie Le Seac’h, as a superb instance of the collective method, in which intense colour mixed with acute sensory experience, come together as the fusion of energies instrumental to creating a spontaneous work of visionary intensity. But for all Fanchon’s education in philosophic and scientific disciplines, the work is never prohibitively cerebral, but always moves seamlessly from mental conception to imaginative expression without trace of interruption.
Almost entirely conceived in Liverpool, in a studio with aerospace-silver walls, high up in her old 19th century house on Greenheys Road, Fanchon Fröhlich who works in a light peculiar to her adopted city, has produced a highly original body of work, edgy, impacting, colourful, energised, and totally, unapologetically the real thing." Jeremy Reed
Read review written by the artinliverpool.com:
at the Grange
An excellent retrospective of 5 decades of work by Fanchon Frohlich opened at The Grange, Ullet Road on Saturday. Fanchon was there of course, looking as elegant and arty as ever. Music by Frakture with whom she collaborated at Cornerstone last year and the gallery proprietor and curator Nicole Bartos read a lovely statement about the artist written by the poet, Jeremy Reed.
As well as several abstract paintings there are charcoal drawings, etchings, masses of sketch books, philosophical writings and my own favourite piece, I think, is her portrait of her late husband Herbert who for many years was Professor of Theoretical Physics at Liverpool University.
The following text is from her website...
Fanchon Fröhlich (nee Angst) was a philosophy student at the University of Chicago, where she worked with Rudolf Carnap (formerly of Vienna, and the founder of the Vienna Circle) and Oxford where she studied with Sir Prof. Peter Strawson, doing a doctorate in Primary and Secondary Qualities.
She studied at Liverpool College of Art, then moved to St Ives to work with Peter Lanyon. Later she travelled to Paris where she worked with the sculptor Szabo and finally studied at Stanley William Hayter’s etching atelier, Atelier 17, all of the time preserving her faith in Abstract Expressionism.
Fanchon’s artwork unites philosophy of science and art, evident for instance in the ‘Position of Light in Art’ and the ‘Paradoxes of Abstract Expressionism and Pop Art’ to the book she co-edited with Sylvie Le Seac'h (who was also a pupil of Hayter): ‘S.W. Hayter Research on Experimental Drawing: Systems of Oscillating Fields‘.
Fanchon has produced both representational paintings - among which is the portrait of her husband to be displayed in the Royal Society (for Scientists) in London - and abstract expressionist paintings, etchings, and more recently ‘Collective Phenomena’.
’ Collective Phenomena’ is the name for a group of abstract artists painting collectively on the same surface, using the gestures of one then another as inspiration and results (in some cases) to a unusual counterpoint.
Viewing 2-6pm, Monday to Saturday or by appointment. Exhibition runs until April 12. 2008.
Photographs above copyrighted to Nicole Bartos and Minako Jackson
See Fanchon Frohlich photo album with some selections from the opening and exhibiton. More images will follow soon.