Diaspora-Artists logo


Francis Newton Souza

Solo show at Julian Hartnoll’s Gallery. 1997
Date: 6 May, 1997 until 24 May, 1997
Curator: Julian Hartnoll
Organiser: Julian Hartnoll’s Gallery

Julian Hartnoll’s Gallery (at the time, located at 14 Mason’s Yard, off Duke Street,St James’s, London, SW1Y 6BU) was the venue for an exhibition of work by Francis Newton Souza, 6 - 24 May 1997. The exhibition came with a folded brochure, lavishly illustrated, containing very useful information and archival images of this fascinating artist. From the brochure text, by Julian Hartnoll:

“This is the first exhibition of Souza’s works in England since the Black Paintings were shown at Grosvenor Gallery in 1966; Souza left for the USA in 1967 and has lived there since. The present exhibition is intended to be, firstly, a re-introduction of an artist who, during the fifties and early sixties, was one of the most provocative and enigmatic artists working in England. John Berger, writing in 1955, was unusually lost for words in descriing his art ending his article “I can only recommend ‘readers to go and look for themselves’ “ - an exhortation I would endorse today.

This exhibition is also an introduction, for it includes a number of Souza’s ‘alterations’.” [One such work, uncredited, appears on the cover of the brochure].

Late on in his short text, Hartnoll continued, “There is a second introduction in this exhibition - that is to works from the period of the Progressive Artists’ Group. In 1947 Souza formed this group in Bombay with Husain, Ara, Raza, Gade and Bakra. The movement was short-lived; Souza who had written the manifesto, left India in 1949. Despite its brevity the movement, caught up in the new spirit of independence, is fundamental to the course of Indian art. It liberated young artists from the strictures of European teaching methods and from a poor parody of Indian classical art, whilst retaining the spirit of their national culture in modernistic terms. Bombay’s Museum of Modern Art has re-opened this year with a definitive exhibition of the Progressive Artists’ Group: the catalogue cover of the Bombay show reproduces a painting by Husain of Souza at his easel - the actual picture on which Souza was working is included in the present exhibition.”

Related items

click to show details of Francis Newton Souza (Julian Hartnoll’s Gallery)

»  Francis Newton Souza (Julian Hartnoll’s Gallery)

Brochure relating to an exhibition, 1997

People in this exhibition

»  Francis Newton Souza

Born, 1924 in Goa, India. Died, 2002

Exhibition venues

»  Julian Hartnoll’s Gallery

London, United Kingdom