Details & Cataloguing

Peter Lanyon
1918 - 1964
signed; also signed and inscribed Anticoli on the reverse
oil on board
105 by 50cm.; 41½ by 19½in.
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Frank Walker
Acquired by the present owners in 1997


Andrew Causey, Peter Lanyon, Aidan Ellis Publishing, Henley-on-Thames, 1971, no.56 (wherein measurements given erroneously as 48 by 20in.)

Catalogue Note

In January 1953, Lanyon travelled to Rome on an Italian government scholarship, spending around four months in the country, basing himself in Anticoli Corrado in the Abruzzi mountains north-east of Rome. Lanyon was familiar with Italy after his war service, and had also visited in 1948 and 1950, and was to return to Anticoli in 1957.

Italy was an important point of reference for Lanyon, and indeed he was inordinately proud of the fact that he had only ever spent one day in Paris. Like St.Ives, Anticoli was a small, steep town and which had a significant history as a haven for artists, and although by 1953 few remained, it had recently been a base for a number of leading Italian figures, including Massimo Campigli and Giuseppe Capogrossi. For Lanyon, these visits seem to have been mostly at times when he felt in need of regeneration and although he did paint whilst in Anticoli in 1953, after the tribulations of the painting of St.Just (Private Collection) prior to the trip, it appears that the restorative effects of a new landscape and experiences were of great importance. It is unclear how many of the paintings which carry Italian titles were painted in situ, but certainly both they and the works he returned to back in St.Ives carry evidence of new influences. Saracinesco (Plymouth City Museum and Art Gallery) is awash with a new and stronger palette, and the handling, as in Anticoli Snow, demonstrates a greater level of manipulation of the paint than previously. Indeed, once back in St.Ives he made significant changes to St.Just, and comparison between a photograph of an earlier state of the painting and its final form does clearly show a much stronger and more defined central emphasis.

20th Century British Art