Ewart Johns at Ottocento

until Oct 20

Figure and Poster, 1976. Oil on canvas. £1,500

Ewart Johns (1923-2013) was mentored by Ceri Richards whilst at Cardiff College of Art in the early 1940s. His career spanned over six decades, exhibiting fluid developments in style and direction, influenced by Picasso, Matisse, Moore and Sutherland, as well as Richards.

With early works merging the human figure with strong colour grounds, the figure radiating from the composition, later his attention is focused on the treatment of the flesh as the personality of the sitter becomes more visible. By the 70s/80s there is a Pop Art slant: a sensual approach to the human form, painted from varying angles, often with motor cars. After that his style freed up, reflecting an interest in theatre and myth and becoming more abstract. 

Even when Johns’ eyesight was failing (to ultimately complete blindness), his relentless dedication allowed him to produce sculptural works in wood and clay and he even managed to produce white line drawings on black grounds.

This selling show offers a wonderful survey of this very appealing artist.