Bridget Riley: The Curve Paintings 1961–2014 is the major exhibition at De La Warr Pavilion this summer, and surveys the artist’s use of the curve motif in a career spanning over 50 years. The show launches a year of celebrations marking 80 years of the Pavilion as one of the first and most significant modernist public buildings in the UK.
The exhibition is formed from a selection of over 30 paintings and studies from throughout Riley’s career, illustrating the artist’s close dedication to the interaction of form and colour by looking at a single motif.
Bridget Riley: The Curve Paintings 1961–2014 begins with early, black-and-white works such as Crest (1964), followed by paintings of twisted curves of blues, pinks and greens from the 1970s and 1980s. Recent works, including Rêve (1999) and Red with Red 1 (2007), combine curvilinear shapes with vibrant colour, described by Riley as ‘generating sweeping rhythms’. The survey also includes – for the first time outside Germany – the wall painting Rajasthan (2012). The paintings are complemented by preparatory studies that offer insight into a number of notable shifts within Riley’s career. The exhibition is designed to directly connect with the building’s elegant architecture, opening out the interior space towards the sea.
A fully illustrated catalogue accompanies the exhibition, published by De La Warr Pavilion and Ridinghouse, featuring an in-depth interview with Riley by Paul Moorhouse, 20th Century Curator at the National Portrait Gallery, London, and a biography by art historian Robert Kudielka.
Bridget Riley was born in 1931 in London and studied at Goldsmiths College from 1949 to 1952, and the Royal College of Art, London from 1952 to 1955. Riley was made a CBE in 1974, appointed the Companion of Honour in 1999, and received the Kaiser Ring of the City of Goslar in 2003. Notable awards include the International Prize for Painting at Venice Biennale in 1968 and the Rubens Prize of the City of Siegen in 2012.
Recent exhibitions include Bridget Riley: Malerei/Painting 1980–2012 (2012) at Museum für Gegenwartskunst Siegen, Siegen; Bridget Riley: Paintings and Related Work (2010–11) at the National Gallery, London; Bridget Riley: From Life (2010) at the National Portrait Gallery, London; Bridget Riley: Flashback (2009–10), an Arts Council Collection exhibition that toured the UK; and Bridget Riley: Rétrospective (2008) at Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris, Paris.
The artist currently lives and works in London.
Supported by Arts Council England and Rother District Council.