Birth of Venus’. 54 x 65 cms. Oils on Canvas. £ 5500. Hand Made Frame. Sold.
There is much about Anthony Murphy’s work for a modern art critic to despise. His paintings are full of life and colour and energy. They are not impenetrable allegories about 18th century slavery or the opression of the Ngo people. They are unrelated to the unspeakable calamities of the Turner Prize, or the car-crash that is the Tate Modern. Simply, they are what they are: the work of a painter who passionately knows his art, who has carefully mastered the technical skills of drawing, of composition, of colour, and who understands how to create balance and poise in a single canvas. More infuriating still for modernists, who so often depend on undiciplined self expression for their work, is the range of skills that enable him to paint portraits, landscapes, still life and abstracts. These would be of astounding merit if he confined himself to one genre: but as this latest exhibition of his work once again revealsm he achieves mastery of them all. One is in no doubt here about the matching of intent and of outcome. There are no accidents in this process, merely artistic vision, creative purpose, technically accomplished excution and triumphant result. Kevin Myers
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