Sir Frank Bowling
Sir Frank Bowling OBE RA (b.1934, British Guiana) lives and works in London, UK.
Over the course of six decades, Frank Bowling has relentlessly pursued a practice which boldly expands the possibilities and properties of paint. Ambitious in scale and scope, his dynamic engagement with the materiality of his chosen medium, and its evolution in the broad sweep of art history, has resulted in paintings of unparalleled originality and power. Bowling has been hailed as one of the foremost British artists of his generation.
Bowling moved from Guyana to London in 1953. He won a scholarship to study at the Royal College of Art in 1959 and graduated in 1962 with a silver medal for painting. He was a contributing editor for Arts Magazine from 1969 to 1972 and held teaching positions at many institutions, including lectureships at the University of Reading (until 1967); Columbia University, New York (until 1969); Rutgers (until 1970); and Massachusetts College of Art, Boston (1970–1). In 2005, Bowling became the first black artist to be elected to the Royal Academy of Arts. In 2008 he was awarded an OBE for his services to art and received a knighthood in the Queen’s Birthday Honours in October 2020. Recently, he was awarded the 2022 Wolfgang Hahn Prize by the Gesellschaft für Moderne Kunst am Museum Ludwig.
Bowling’s work has been exhibited internationally. In 2017, a major museum exhibition of Bowling’s painting from 1967 to 1989 was held at Haus der Kunst in Munich, which toured to the Irish Museum of Modern Art in Dublin (2018) and the Sharjah Art Foundation in the United Arab Emirates (2018). Bowling’s hugely successful Tate Britain retrospective was held in 2019 and in 2021, the Arnolfini Gallery in Bristol held Land of Many Waters, a major exhibition showcasing work from the last decade. The following year, Bowling showcased his sculptural work at the Stephen Lawrence Gallery in London, and opened a major show, Frank Bowling’s Americas, at the Museum of Fine Arts Boston. The MFA Boston exhibition will tour to the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art in 2023.
website: Sir Frank Bowling OBE RA
Gallery Images (from left)
- Frank Bowling, Cover Girl, 1966, acrylic, oil, and silkscreened ink on canvas, 149.8 x 101.6 cm. Courtesy the artist. Photographed by Charlie Littlewood. © Frank Bowling. All rights reserved, DACS 2023
- Frank Bowling, Night Journey, 1968–1969, acrylic on canvas, 212.7 × 183.2 cm. Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Gift of Maddy and Larry Mohr, 2011 (2011.590.2). © Frank Bowling. All rights reserved, DACS 2023
- Frank Bowling, Rosebush, 1974, acrylic on canvas, 196 x 107 cm. Courtesy the artist. Photographed by Damian Griffiths. © Frank Bowling. All rights reserved, DACS 2023
- Frank Bowling, Remember Thine Eyes, 2014, acrylic on canvas, 237.5 x 189 cm. Courtesy the artist. Photographed by Charlie Littlewood. © Frank Bowling. All Rights Reserved, DACS 2023
- Featured Image: Frank Bowling, Night Journey, 1968–1969, acrylic on canvas, 212.7 × 183.2 cm. Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Gift of Maddy and Larry Mohr, 2011 (2011.590.2). © Frank Bowling. All rights reserved, DACS 2023