Gordon Onslow Ford

(1912-2003)
Lot 227
Gordon Onslow Ford
River Road
Estimate: $15,000 - $20,000
Price Realized: $37,500
May 21, 2017
Lot 228
Gordon Onslow Ford
Untitled
Estimate: $3,000 - $5,000
Price Realized: $2,500
May 21, 2017
Lot 229
Gordon Onslow Ford
Untitled
Estimate: $2,000 - $3,000
Price Realized: $1,875
May 21, 2017
Lot 230
Gordon Onslow Ford
In Vironment
Estimate: $15,000 - $20,000
May 21, 2017
Lot 220
Gordon Onslow Ford
Untitled-145
Estimate: $8,000 - $12,000
Price Realized: $8,750
October 9, 2016
Lot 221
Gordon Onslow Ford
Out of the Woods (1)
Estimate: $4,000 - $6,000
Price Realized: $3,750
October 9, 2016
Lot 222
Gordon Onslow Ford
Being Space Being
Estimate: $10,000 - $15,000
Price Realized: $10,000
October 9, 2016
Lot 224
Gordon Onslow Ford
Jewel
Estimate: $8,000 - $12,000
Price Realized: $7,500
October 9, 2016
Lot 153
Gordon Onslow Ford
Spring of Night and Day
Estimate: $8,000 - $12,000
Price Realized: $10,000
May 22, 2016
Lot 155
Gordon Onslow Ford
Si tu avais idee de ton ame oiseau
Estimate: $4,000 - $6,000
Price Realized: $10,625
May 22, 2016
Lot 156
Gordon Onslow Ford
Untitled
Estimate: $4,000 - $6,000
Price Realized: $2,875
May 22, 2016
Lot 157
Gordon Onslow Ford
Both Sides One
Estimate: $15,000 - $20,000
Price Realized: $15,000
May 22, 2016
Lot 75
Gordon Onslow Ford
The Desert's Dazzling Furniture
Estimate: $5,000 - $7,000
Price Realized: $10,000
February 21, 2016
Lot 76
Gordon Onslow Ford
Heaven is Earth
Estimate: $8,000 - $12,000
Price Realized: $9,375
February 21, 2016
Lot 77
Gordon Onslow Ford
Dancing Still
Estimate: $20,000 - $30,000
Price Realized: $28,125
February 21, 2016
Lot 78
Gordon Onslow Ford
Abstraction in Yellow
Estimate: $4,000 - $6,000
Price Realized: $5,937
February 21, 2016
Lot 80
Gordon Onslow Ford
Abstraction in Black and White
Estimate: $3,000 - $5,000
Price Realized: $3,437
February 21, 2016
Lot 81
Gordon Onslow Ford
Lunar Wind
Estimate: $10,000 - $15,000
Price Realized: $28,125
February 21, 2016
Lot 280
Gordon Onslow Ford
Untitled (4)
Estimate: $3,000 - $5,000
Price Realized: $10,000
October 13, 2013

About The Artist


English-born artist Gordon Onslow Ford (1912-2003) is remembered as an important member of the 1930s surrealist group centered around André Breton, who gathered at Les Deux Magots in Paris.

Born to a family of artists, Onslow Ford joined the British navy and traveled widely from a young age. He visited Paris during this time and eventually moved to the city in 1937. There he came into contact with the leading artists of the day, studying briefly under Fernand Leger and going on to befriend André Breton, Yves Tanguy, and Max Ernst. He was also a regular visitor to the studios of Pablo Picasso, Joan Miró and Giorgio de Chirico. Onslow Ford then moved to New York where he presented a series of influential lectures on Surrealism in 1941, attended by leading Abstract Expressionists such as Robert Motherwell, Arshile Gorky and Jackson Pollock. He later relocated to California, where his work from the 1950s began to be shaped by his interest in Buddhism and Japanese zen calligraphy.

Onslow Ford’s painting is characterized by a fascination with cosmic landscapes, populated by graphic lines, astral forms and glowing light. He devised an approach he named “coulage,” in which he poured paint directly on the canvas, before moving it around to generate myriad patterns. Onslow Ford invented this method years before Pollock’s renowned drip technique. Later in life, Onslow Ford continued to espouse Breton's concept of "automatic writing", or automatism. He wrote a statement of his own theory and practice of painting based on escaping the strictures of so-called logic, which included the following definition: "Spontaneous painting comes about through cultivating the open mind and painting just faster than rational thought, just faster than the painter's speed of consciousness, while giving full attention to what is appearing in the painting as it appears.”

His works are held in the collections of the Tate Britain, London; Whitney Museum of American Art, New York; the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York; San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.

“Gordon Onslow Ford: Surrealist painter on a quest for the inner worlds of life and art.” The Guardian. M. McNay. Nov, 24 2003. Web. Sept 27, 2016.

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