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Ron King | Alphabets, Bandits & Collaborations 2019


We're delighted to announce an exhibition of Ron King’s work from 27 April 2019. Ron King was born São Paulo, Brazil in 1932 and, despite being sent to England in 1945, still has a strong attachment to the Brazilian country and its culture. At the age of 12 he became fascinated with the macabre photograph that he saw in one of his father’s books of the decapitated heads of the infamous Brazilian bandit leader Lampião and his notorious band. This image has remained with King throughout his life and is the source of masks and unforgettable sculptures that will be on show at Goldmark.

Ron King has had an artistic life that spans a multi faceted and inspiring 60 years. His iconographic work is marked by a distinctive, fresh and often pioneering approach. As an artist his work can’t be pinned down by genre but it does have an approach that is hallmarked by a distinctive curiosity, questioning and energy. King is considered one of the modern-day masters of artist books and his cut out Alphabets are recognised as timeless 20th century works of arts. The iconic status of his Alphabet was recognised in 2011 when the Crafts Council chose it for its '40:40' selection of Forty Objects for Forty Years. Goldmark have commissioned a signed limited edition of 100 of the Alphabet to mark the exhibition.

The exhibition will be accompanied by a new Goldmark film, shot in his studio in Sussex, where Ron King talks about his life and inspiration; the development of his work and the founding of Circle Press as an ongoing collaboration with other artists. The film highlights his continuing relationship with the USA which was underlined in 2002 with the purchase of the Circle Press' complete output and archives by the Paul Mellon Foundation at The Yale Center for British Art in New Haven, Connecticutt. A similar collection in the UK was donated in 2013 to Cardiff University.

King also talks movingly in the film about the sudden death of his son, from cancer, aged only 15 and that of his second son from the same disease 30 years later and the profound effect the passing of his sons has had on his life and his work.

Ron King Alphabets, Bandits and Collaborations opens at the Goldmark Gallery Uppingham on 27 April with a conversation with the artist and lunch. Please join us.


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