Michael Ayrton 1921-1975
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Michael Ayrton Paintings and Drawings
Bird of Fortune, 1951
Pen, ink and wash
56 x 75 cm.
Signed and dated upper left
£4,500 (exclusive of taxes)
Monnow Valley Arts. The Nicolas and Frances McDowall Collection of British Neo-Romantic Art. ABC Print Ltd: Hereford. p.11
In the late 40s, Michael Ayrton made trips to Italy (Ischia and Tuscany) and made a series of very distinctive paintings and drawings depicting life and people of the area and, especially, of how vines were prepared around Easter time. Many of the people depicted are clearly family groups, and children of all ages abound. This evocative and sensitive drawing, dated 1951, was done after his return to his studio in All Souls Place in London.
Acrobats: Figure In Balance, 1956
Mixed media on paper
49 x 34 cm.
Signed and dated lower left
£3,500 (exclusive of taxes)
‘Michael Ayrton: Drawings and Sculpture’. Cory, Adams & MacKay (London: 1966) no.40
The series of bronzes and drawings depicting Figures in Balance draws its imagery from the world of the circus, and to this extent echoes the subject matter of his earliest paintings. Central to it, however, was Ayrtons interest in the logistics of the human form motivated in part by the artist’s growing arthritic condition. The momentary equilibrium in the midst of tension and movement is superbly captured.