Conversation with Alan Gouk

Painter Alan Gouk discusses his six decade career as a painter and writer in a lively, wide-ranging conversation with Matt Dennis.

In his introduction Dennis notes that while “any serious consideration of [Gouk’s] lifetime’s achievement must … begin and end with the paintings themselves, there is so much more to be taken into account: his work as Exhibitions Officer with the British Council, that brought him into contact with pretty much everyone of importance in the art establishment of the mid-1960s; his long involvement with the teaching of abstract sculpture at the very highest level, on the Advanced Course at St Martins School of Art during the ground-breaking years for British sculpture of the 1960s and 1970s; his pivotal role amongst the artists that established, maintained and worked in the studios at the Stockwell Depot, one of the very last redoubts for a certain strain of High Modernism in painting and sculpture against the onslaught of postmodern art; and of course, the writing: running parallel to his studio practice, informed by the same instincts that have impelled him always to aim high in his own painting, looking always to identify and elucidate the reasons why the work of this painter or that sculptor succeeds or falls short.”

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