Michael Andrews


With Anthony d'Offay Gallery, London, 1984
Private Collection


1986, London, Anthony d'Offay Gallery, Rock of ages cleft for me: Recent Paintings by Michael Andrews, 28 May - 4 July 1986, cat. no. 6
2006, Norwich, Norwich Castle Museum & Art Gallery and Sheffield, Millennium Galleries, Art at the Rockface: The Fascination of Stone, 22 May - 3 Sept. 2006 and 23 Sept. 2006 - 7 Jan. 2007, unnumbered
2019, London, Piano Nobile, Craigie Aitchison and the Beaux Arts Generation, 14 Nov. 2019 - 29 Jan. 2020, cat. no. 40


Andrew W. Moore and Nigel Larkin, ed., Art at the Rockface: The Fascination of Stone, 2006, Philip Wilson, p. 28 (col. illus.)
Susan Campbell, Craigie Aitchison and the Beaux Arts Generation, 2019, Piano Nobile Publications, cat. no. 40, pp. 120-121 (col. illus.)
In October 1983, Andrews spent ten days at Ayers Rock and a nearby group of rock formations. He was accompanied by his Australian relatives Michael Ramsden and Jenny Kee and spent his time climbing over and around the terrain, occasionally making a watercolour drawing. Upon returning to his studio in Norfolk, he spent six years making a cycle of large-scale acrylic paintings depicting the Uluru landscape. Along with two other works, this watercolour of Maggie Springs was the only study made on site in Australia that Andrews deemed suitable for exhibition at the time of his show with Anthony d’Offay in 1986.

These works are distinguished by the inclusion of sandy red soil, forming a direct connection with the Australian landscape. As Andrews remarked to William Feaver, ‘The point is the potency of the place.’ In an effort to reconstitute that potency in a picture, he had recourse to the literal substance of the landscape – mixing the dust with his watercolour and acrylic media, lending these works a redness authentic to the subject. Andrews later made a similar gesture with his Thames paintings of the 1990s, which mix oil paint with gritted mud drawn from the banks of the river.