abstract art, a systems view

Jack Bush Paintings

with 7 comments

The University of Warwick has an excellent public art collection of over 800 art works. They are often on show right where studying is being done, and you can phone and make an appointment to view specific pieces.

part of the original buildings, designed by the modernist architect Eugene Rosenberg who also selected the first works of the collection, nine in all, two of which were the Jack Bush paintings.

I had learned long ago that there were Jack Bush paintings here but only recently taken the time to go and see them. The only time I had seen any of his paintings in the flesh previously was in a one person show at the Serpentine Gallery in 1980.

Anyway no photographs in this post I am afraid, for copyright reasons, but here are links to photos of the two paintings I saw: Joseph’s Coat and Charcoal Band.

Even more outrageously colourful than I had expected, breathtaking to view, they are hung as a pair, and high up so that perspex cases are not necessary. Climbing the stairs, I got a really good look at them both, Josephs Coat from Bush’s Fringe series, on the left, slightly larger than Charcoal Band, one of his Sash paintings, on the right. They look like oil rather than acrylic colours.

We have the modernist architect Eugene Rosenberg to thank for the selection of these and other colour field paintings in this collection:

I am committed to the belief that the artist has an important contribution to make to architecture. The bond between contemporary art and architecture is not easy to define, but I believe they are complementary – that architecture is enriched by art and that art has something to gain from its architectural setting. If asked why we need art, I could give answers based on philosophy, aesthetics, prestige, but the one I put high on the list is that art should be part of the enjoyment of everyday life.

Written by Andy Parkinson

February 9, 2012 at 8:45 am

7 Responses

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  1. Love the Jack Bush paintings.


    February 9, 2012 at 9:18 am

  2. I would show the pictures and just credit Warwick University, they are in the public domain and you are using then for educational purposes only, therefore you are not breaching copyright laws.

    Molecules of Emotion

    February 9, 2012 at 11:26 am

    • The copyright stays with the artist, and my undestanding is that the estate of Jack Bush may see it differently than you do, so I am treading carefully (and respectfully), though I have doubts about who it protects and how.

      Andy Parkinson

      February 9, 2012 at 5:18 pm

  3. I like Jack Bush’s palette.


    February 9, 2012 at 11:44 am

  4. Thanks all of you for commenting, they are wonderful aren’t they?

    Andy Parkinson

    February 9, 2012 at 5:19 pm

  5. These are good posts you do, pointing out that there is real art in places we might not expect. This is good stuff to be aware of…


    February 13, 2012 at 10:30 pm

    • thanks Zorgor. I didn;t realise I was as positive as that. Aren’t I usually compaining about how little abstract painting I get to see (especially in contemporary art galleries)? I suppose this does then keep me looking out for collections and they seem to turn up in unlikely places.
      In UK we seem to have quite a few University collections. There are some good paintings in storage at the Whitworth Gallery at Manchester University and one day I will arrange to see some of those.
      I must say it is unusual to find a collection as good as the one at Warwick University.

      Andy Parkinson

      February 14, 2012 at 10:42 pm

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