12th March 2011 – 1st May 2011
This group exhibition explores A Life in Art of Monika Kinley: who all her working life has been involved with the arts. Monika Kinley is a significant figure in the art world who supported and helped the careers of many exceptional artists. Monika Kinley now lives in Plymouth and is still engaged with the art world.
Monika Kinley grew up in Berlin and Vienna; after attending school and college in England, she worked at the Tate Gallery (now Tate Britain) in the 1950s, where the works, exhibitions, and contacts with artists, critics and writers laid the foundations for her continuing activities in the art world.
In the 1960s short periods with commercial galleries led to her decision to try to find artists whose work she admired, and subsequently exhibited in her flat in Hammersmith, London. She showed many artists such as Prunella Clough, Paula Rego, and Frank Auerbach. She wanted to have the chance to get to know the artists themselves. The intimacy of the flat led to interesting conversations, which would lead not only to the sale of, but continuing interest in their work. Many are now admired and well known and have remained her friends.
This exhibition shows a selection of works on loan from public collections, galleries and other institutions; and from some artists themselves. It is a sensitive insight into what Monika Kinley admires, both past and present.
Since 1984 she continued the work of her partner, Victor Musgrave, who initiated the Outsider exhibition at the Hayward Gallery in London in 1979, with co-curator Roger Cardinal. Musgrave died tragically young in 1984 and Monika Kinley continued to discover and collect the works of Outsider Artists: these artists were motivated by their own visions. Last year the Musgrave Kinley Collection was gifted by the Musgrave Kinley Outsider Trust, to the Whitworth Gallery in Manchester. A small collection of Outsider works will be shown as part of the exhibition at the Plymouth Arts Centre.
This exhibition has been supported by Tate, Rugby Art Gallery and Museum, Whitworth Art Gallery, Manchester, Arts Council of England Collection, Marlborough Fine Art, Anthony Reynolds, Flowers Galleries, Sue Pratt Contemporary Art, Plymouth City Museum & Art Gallery and the artists.