Keith Vaughan British, 1912-1977


John Keith Vaughan (23 August 1912 – 4 November 1977), generally known as Keith Vaughan, was a British painter best known for his muted abstractions of male nudes, landscapes, and architecture. 



1912 Born at Selsey, Sussex.
1921-30 Boarded at Christ's Hospital, Horsham, Sussex - inspirational art master H A Rigby.
1931-38 Worked at Lintas advertising agency, in London.
1939 Left the Lintas advertising agency to paint full time at Shere in Surrey; his brother Dick, an RAF fighter pilot, was killed.
1941 Served in the pioneer Corps, in Wiltshire and for much of the war in Malton, Yorkshire.
1946-48 Taught at Camberwell School of Art.
1948-52 Shared a house with John Minton and started teaching at the Central School of Art. Commissioned to paint the central mural in the Dome of Discovery at the 1951 Festival of Britain. Included in the Arts Council's 'Sixty Paintings for ‘51', as part of the Festival of Britain.
1952 Moved to the Hampstead flat where he lived until his death.
1953 Included in Patrick Heron’s 'Space in Colour'.
1954 Started teaching at the Slade.
1959 Taught a term at Iowa University, USA and visited Chicago and Mexico.
1962 Retrospective at the Whitechapel Gallery.
1964 Honorary Fellowship, Royal College of Art.
1965 Holidayed in N. Africa with major effect on subsequent work.
        Awarded the CBE.
1965-77 Lived and worked in London, spending weekends at his cottage in Essex.
1966 Journals and Drawings 1939 - 1965 published.
1975 Received cancer diagnosis and committed suicide in 1977.


Selected solo exhibitions

1944 Reid and Lefevre Gallery, London, ‘Keith Vaughan: Gouaches and Drawings’.
1948 George Dix Gallery, New York, USA ‘Paintings and Gouaches’.
1950 Instituto de Arte Moderno, Buenos Aires, ‘Keith Vaughan: Paintings’.
1952 Redfern Gallery, London, ‘Keith Vaughan: Retrospective'.
        Hanover Gallery, ‘Keith Vaughan: Drawings for Rimbaud (Une Saison en Enfer)’.
1955 Durlacher Bros., New York, USA ‘Paintings and Gouaches’.
1958 Royal West of England Academy, Bristol - Retrospective, paintings.
1959 State University of Iowa, USA ‘Paintings and Gouaches’.
        Leicester Galleries, London, ‘Keith Vaughan: Gouaches’.
1962 Whitechapel Gallery, London, ‘Keith Vaughan: Retrospective’.
1963 Bienale de Sao Paulo, Brazil ‘Drawings’.
1965 Marlborough New London Gallery, ‘Keith Vaughan: Recent Gouaches’.
1970 Bear Lane Gallery, Oxford, ‘Keith Vaughan: Paintings and Gouaches’.
1976 Waddington Galleries, London, ‘Keith Vaughan: New Paintings and Gouaches’.
        Compass Gallery, Glasgow ‘paintings and Gouaches’.
1981 Geffrye Museum, London - ‘Images of Man: Figurative paintings 1946 - 1960’.
1983 Redfern Gallery, London, ‘Keith Vaughan: 1912-1977’.
1987 Austin Desmond Fine Art, Sunninghill, ‘Keith Vaughan: Paintings, Gouaches, Watercolours and Drawings’.
1990 Anthony Hepworth Fine Art, Bath, ‘Keith Vaughan: Paintings, Gouaches and Drawings’.
1994 Redfern Gallery, London, ‘Keith Vaughan: Works on Paper'.
2007 Victoria Art Gallery, Bath ‘Figure and Landscape 1945 - 1977’.
        Osborne Samuel, London, ‘Keith Vaughan: Paintings and Drawings’.
2010 Gallery 27, London, ‘Keith Vaughan: Four Decades of Drawing’.
2012 Pallant House Gallery, Chichester, ‘Keith Vaughan: Romanticism to Abstraction’.


Selected group exhibitions

1946 Arts Council, 'Four Young British Painters: Keith Vaughan, Michael Ayrton, John Minton, William Scott'.
1952 Hanover Gallery, London, ‘Three Painters: Keith Vaughan, Rose Pulham, E.Q.Nicholson’.
1959 British Council Touring the State Galleries of Australia, ‘Seven British Painters: Keith Vaughan, Alan Davie, Merlyn Evans, William Gear, Terry Frost, Roger Hilton, Bryan Wynter’.
1964 British Council and National Gallery of Canada, ‘Contemporary British Painting’.
1987 Barbican Art Gallery, London, ‘A Paradise Lost: The Neo-Romantic Imagination in Britain 1935 - 1950’.
1998 RHA Gallagher Gallery, Dublin and London, ‘The Fifties: Art from the British Council Collection'.
2010 Anthony Hepworth Fine Arts, London, ‘Keith Vaughan and Prunella Clough: A Selection of Works from the Hargreaves and Ball Charitable Trust'.


Selected collections

British Council Art Collection
Birmingham Museum of Art
Imperial War Museum
Leeds Museum and Galleries
National Portrait Gallery, London
Pallant House Gallery, London
Tate Britain, London
Albright Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo , New York
Art Gallery of Ontario, Toronto
National Gallery of South Australia, Adelaide
Auckland Art Gallery
Ashmolean Museum of Art and Archaeology, Oxford