Albert Irvin, 1922–2015

The British abstract painter and printmaker has died

Albert Irvin, Saint Thomas, series 3, 1998. Courtesy the artist

London born abstract painter and printmaker Albert Irvin has died at the age of 92. Conceiving the picture space as a metaphorical landscape, Irvin explored and experimented with the possibilities of colour through a variety of media, from acrylic to watercolours, gouaches and screenprints.

Evacuated to Northamptonshire when war broke out in 1939 Irvin gained a scholarship to Northampton School of Art. He was called up in 1941 and after having served as a navigator for the Royal Air Force he resumed his studies at Goldsmiths College (1946–1950), where he also returned as a teacher between 1962 and 1983. Irvin’s style moved away from from impressionism and social realism in the mid-1950s, after which his focus settled on the abstract and the experimental.

Represented by Gimpel Fils, London, Irvin received an Arts Council Major Award and a Gulbenkian Award for printmaking in 1983. He was elected a Royal Academician in 1998 and was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in the 2013 Birthday Honours for services to the visual arts.

30 March 2015.