Anthony Michael Dorrell 1923 – 1987


This website is not intended as a comprehensive survey of the scope and development of his work, but rather by emphasising paintings from his two major cycles, Black Earth (1980-83) and Europe (1973-86), it seeks to focus on two extremes of the artist’s creativity – nature and history.

One of Anthony Dorrell’s greatest gifts was a capacity to treat his audience with a degree of affection and respect. He had clear views of both history and nature, and of the inseparability of one from the other, and he was not a pessimist. Far from entertaining any sentimental illusions about the timelessness of art and the ephemeral nature of existence, he remained firmly in the here and now. He was a constant advocate of freedom and defender of social and individual justice and an avid enemy of the hypocrisies of and pretensions of money and class. He lived the twentieth century and used his gifts to offer both nature and history the devotion of a lifetime, in witness and in celebration.

For an artist who left such a huge body of work it was incredible how rarely his works were shown to the public. His last one-man exhibition was in 1968, as he instead exhibited in group shows such as in London’s Whitechapel Gallery show ‘Art for Society’ in the seventies. His first and only posthumous exhibition took place in 1989 at St Michael’s Mount, Longstanton.

Click here for information about where you can now see Anthony Dorrell's work.