Simon Lewty 1941–2021

Messages From the Past: Master Works From Five Decades

Art First, London
10 October - 22 December 2023

(The gallery will be closed between 22 November and 3 December)

Art First is pleased to present the first tribute exhibition to Simon Lewty since he died in 2021 and it brings to light some of his most affecting, curious and brilliant works. The dream-like imagery, with its flow of calligraphic words and the overall poetic output, is unlike any other artist’s. Following his major debut exhibition at the Serpentine Gallery, in 1985, his practice evolved privately, from home studios in Leamington Spa and through regular exhibitions with Art First in London. Various Art fairs and occasional exhibitions of work abroad, acquisitions and guest appearances in museums throughout the UK, brought him to the attention of others, especially artists, but he did not travel or ‘market’ himself, making only occasional appearances at exhibitions, attending his own openings and gallery dinners, but then rapidly retreating to the calm of his studio. He leaves an extraordinary legacy.

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Simon Lewty installation image 1Simon Lewty installation image 2Simon Lewty, Ritual of an Ancient Window, 1978, pen and ink on paper, 49.5 x 129.5 cmSimon Lewty, Dartmoor Known and Unknown, 1988, pencil and pencil crayon on paper, 46 x 224 cmSimon Lewty, Ancient Summer, 1995, pencil and pencil crayon on paper, 153 x 160 cmSimon Lewty, Eclipse, Sea, Dream, Song, 2012, ink on paper, 87.5 x 68 cmSimon Lewty, Eclipse, Sea, Dream, Song (detail)Simon Lewty, Logic, 2003, coloured ink, acrylic, pastel, 49 x 87 cm Simon Lewty, Nereid: Melite, 2018, tachygraphy text, ink on gesso on paper, 26 x 26 cm Simon Lewty, Jokes on the Porch, 1993, pencil and acrylic on paper Simon Lewty, Jokes on the Porch (detail), 1993, pencil and acrylic on paper


Margaret Hunter

States of Being

Art First, London
7-29 September 2023

Art First is delighted to present a new body of work by Margaret Hunter, fresh from her Berlin studio. This is the first solo exhibition since the previous show in 2013 in our Fitzrovia premises. Perhaps the more reflective note in the recent works originates from the Covid-19 lock down period when Hunter worked quietly on her archive, sifting through and re-visiting ideas that had evolved over decades. Then she travelled to Malaga where an encounter with Picasso’s choice works in the Picasso Museum inspired a new departure.

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Margaret Hunter, Unity, 2012, acrylic on canvas, 100 x 70 cmMargaret Hunter, Looking Out, 2023, oil on canvas, 50 x 40 cmMargaret Hunter, Options, oil on wood, 2023, 30 x 24 cmMargaret Hunter, Malaga Girls, 2023, oil on wood, 60 x 50 cmMargaret Hunter installation image 1Margaret Hunter installation image 12

Moody & Muted

Art First, London
3-25 August 2023

Teniqua Crawford, Marisol Jacquemot Derode, Jake Harvey, Gillian Lever, Simon Lewty, Helen MaCAlister, Will Maclean, Bridget Madcoald, Kate McCrickard, Simon Morley, Donald Teskey, Partou Zia

The exhibition includes fourteen artists whose work lends itself to the pensive, the poetic and at times the conceptual. Independent, challenging and fascinating, many of the participants have work held in museum and other public collections. Good publications are available, which document their careers to date.

We are delighted to introduce two guest artists; Teniqua Crawford and the ceramicist Marisol Jacquemot Derode. Also included are Simon Lewty and Partou Zia, both no longer alive, but who have exhibited with ART FIRST and alongside their fellow artists in this exhibition for a substantial period. We are working with both of their Estates.

There are paintings, drawings, assemblage work, sculpture, prints and ceramics, with prices ranging from £500—£30,000.

Come and enjoy the dialogue and the special affinities during this reflective month of late summer light, before the busy Autumn season rushes in.

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Gillian Lever, Solitude, 2023, oil on canvas, 41 x 30 cm Donald Teskey, Drawing in charcoal from the Castlemorris Series, 2023 Teniqua Crawford, Portrait: Michael Nyman, charcoal on sheet music, 34 x 25 cm Bridget Macdonald, Emblems for a Lost Prince, 2022, charcoal on paper, 81 x 122 cm Kate McCrickard, Punks, 2023, Drypoint printed in black ink on Arches off-white, 250g, plate size 42 x 50 cm, edition of 12, published by Michael Woolworth, Paris Will Maclean, Thoughts of Time, 2013, found objects and mixed media, 53 x 53 x 5 cm Partou Zia, Seat of Energy, 2004, oil on canvas, 30 x 30 cm Installation image 1 Installation image 2 Installation image 3: Donald Teskey [left]; Alex Lowery [centre]; Gillian Lever [Right] Installation image 4: Simon Morley [top]; Partou Zia [lower shelf]; Will Maclean [left]; Gillian Lever [right] Installation image 5

Will Maclean

Points of Departure II

Art First, London
10 May - 22 July 2023

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Kate McCrickard: New Romantics
Marisol Jacquemot Derode: Ceramic Counterpoints

Art First, London
8 March - 28 April 2023

Art First is delighted to present this exhibition by Kate McCrickard, with ceramicist Marisol Jacquemot-Derode. Inspired by Parisian life in a post covid world, McCrickard’s urban subjects are vibrant and beautifully observed. New Romantics explores scenes from her local cafés and bars, or on the streets, where Goths and Punks gather curiously on corners, and there are also domestic tableaux featuring family feasts, and imagined scenes based on the artist’s fugitive drawings lifted constantly from real life. In an unusual collaboration, Jacquemot-Derode’s sculptural, gorgeous vessels are made in response to McCrickard’s paintings as Ceramic Counterpoints.

View Kate McCrickard
Online Catalogue

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Kate McCrickard, Hounds of Love, 2023, oil on linen, 120 x 90 cmKate McCrickard, Feast, 2023, oil on linen, 120 x 150 cmKate McCrickard, Prostitution With Two Cancelled White Men, 2023, oil on linen, 80 x 100 cmDragueurs, 2023, oil on linen, 50 x 65 cmInstallation image 1Installation image 2Marisol Jacquemot Derode, Toi et Moi, glazed earthenware installation work, 63 x 47 cmMarisol Jacquemot Derode, Fantaisie, earthenware vessel with terra sigillata exterior and red glazed top, 60 x 28 cm