Spring Curated

May 05 - May 26, 2022

This session is closed for bidding.
Current bid: $35,000 CAD
Bidding History
Paddle # Date Amount

5763 26-May-2022 12:50:16 PM $35,000

The bidding history list updated on: Wednesday, October 05, 2022 12:06:03

LOT 003

1931 - 1999

oil on canvas
on verso signed, titled, dated Dec 1980 and inscribed "For Rafael Alberti"
84 x 72 in, 213.4 x 182.9 cm

Estimate: $40,000 - $60,000 CAD

Sold for: $43,250

Preview at:

Isaacs Gallery Ltd., Toronto
Private Collection, Toronto

Coughtry helped define the look of Toronto’s painting scene in the 1970s, being a crucial figure of the Spadina Avenue artists and a staple at Av Isaac’s influential gallery. Perhaps equally important was Coughtry’s interest in jazz: in the 1960s through 80s he played trombone as part of the Artists’ Jazz Band, an influential free-jazz group that included Robert Markle, Gordon Raynor, Nobuo Kubota, as well as (occasionally) Michael Snow, Richard Gorman and Dennis Burton among others. Self-taught and expressionistic, they played primarily private shows in studios, galleries, and apartments. This musicality is evidently expressed in Coughtry’s broad canvases of twisting bodies and energetic colour, entwined together in expressive, vibrant movement.

Rojo is dedicated to the Spanish poet Rafael Alberti, part of the Generation of ‘27 group of dissident poets active during and following the Spanish civil war. Among Alberti’s writings was A la pintura, a volume inspired by artists and paintings which included dedications to the various colours (an edition of some of those poems illuminated by lithographs by Robert Motherwell was printed in 1971). Here, Coughtry presents his own interpretation or homage to Alberti’s celebration of colour and the act of painting. Curiously, the titled colour is not given the most prominence as the field is dominated by teals, blues, and greens – compliments to red on the colour wheel – with fiery reds used in highlighted slashes, energizing the contorted, dancer-like figure.

All prices are in Canadian Dollars

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