The Mayor Gallery is showing work by two prominent women artists of the 20th Century. Both Sylvia Plath and Dadamaino left a strong mark on the world, expressing themselves in very different ways, yet producing work during the same time frame. The exhibition will show pieces from 1955-1962.
44 never exhibited before drawings by Sylvia Plath (1932-1963) will illustrate the strong connection between her writing and artwork. The carefully constructed, pen and ink drawings, which were given to Plath’s daughter, the artist Frieda Hughes, by her father some years before he died, date from 1955, a pivotal period for Plath as she graduated from Smiths College, Massachusetts and won a Fulbright scholarship to Newham College, Cambridge, in England. It was here that she met and ultimately married Ted Hughes (1956) and during the Cambridge years she travelled in Europe, recording what she saw through keenly observed drawings. References to the drawings appear in her diaries and letters, mainly to her mother.
“The Bell Jar’ is a sensitive image of a pair of shoes, apparently discarded, that brings to mind a passage from her famous book of the same name: ‘I had removed my patent leather shoes after a while, for they foundered badly in the sand. It pleased me to think they would be perched there on a silver log pointing out to sea, like a sort of soul-compass after I was dead”.
Italian born Dadamaino, whose name was shortened from Eduarda Maino (1935-2004), was one of the key artists of the Zero Group, along with Lucio Fontana, Enrico Castellani and Piero Manzoni. A selection of 18 works at The Mayor Gallery will feature her trademark early cut-out monochromatic canvases, arid and brutal, as well as her 60s stretched perforated plastic works. Her work is primarily about stretching the limits of perception: for her, the holes in her paintings revealed areas of light and shadow that moved and vibrated. Dadamaino was an early pioneer of the minimalist sensibility that paved the way towards Kinetic and Op Art.
Press enquiries: Niina Cunynghame at The Mayor Gallery [email protected]
Mon-Fri 10am - 5.30pm; Sat 12pm - 3pm - Admission: Free
Nearest Tube Station: Green Park or Piccadilly Circus.