David Remfry, MBE RA (b. 1942)

Remfry, studied at Hull College of Art from 1959 to 1964 before moving to London. His first one-man show was at the Grafton Gallery in 1973 and in the USA at the Ankrum Gallery, Los Angeles, in 1980. He has exhibited regularly since then in galleries across the USA. Solo museum shows in England include the National Portrait Gallery and the Victoria and Albert Museum, London. Many exhibitions of his work have been shown in Holland and Germany. He lives and works in London and New York. Awarded the MBE in 2001, Remfry was elected Royal Academician in 2006.

David Remfry lived in New York – for many years at the Chelsea Hotel. Dancers are a particular subject of his and an exhibition of that name was held at the Boca Raton Museum of Art, Florida, in 2002 and subsequently toured, among other places, to the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge, and the Ferens Art Gallery, Hull (city of the artist’s birth).

David Remfry, MBE RA (b. 1942), Dancers (Mr. and Mrs. Stanley Bard), 2000

 

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Watercolour
59½ x 20 in (151.1 x 50.8 cm)
Signed and dated
Collections: The Estate of Stanley Bard (1934-2016)

The dancers are Stanley and Phyllis Bard, former owners of the famous Chelsea Hotel in New York. David Remfry records that, “for about a year Stanley and Phyllis would come to my studio, Room 1015 at the Hotel Chelsea, on Friday mornings. They liked Latin American music and Frank Sinatra and would dance together whilst I drew them. I wanted to capture the connection they had and, as they lost themselves in the music, they were almost oblivious of me.’’

Over its colourful 135-year history, the Chelsea Hotel was host to a string of legendary guests. Andy Warhol shot parts of Chelsea Girls at the hotel and Jackson Pollock, Larry Rivers, Mark Rothko and Robert Mapplethorpe were residents. Musicians, including Bob Dylan, Janis Joplin and Patti Smith, all lived in and wrote about the hotel. Dylan Thomas, a Chelsea resident, died of pneumonia after a heavy drinking bout nearby and Nancy Spungen, girlfriend of Sid Vicious, was found stabbed to death in the hotel. Arthur Clarke wrote 2001: A Space Odyssey while staying at the Chelsea.

David Remfry lived in New York – for many years at the Chelsea. Dancers are a particular subject of his and an exhibition of that name was held at the Boca Raton Museum of Art, Florida, in 2002 and subsequently toured, among other places, to the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge, and the Ferens Art Gallery, Hull (city of the artist’s birth).

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