Farewell to an Icon

In the heart of London’s vibrant art scene, Marlborough Gallery has stood as a monument of creativity for eight remarkable decades. With a rich history that intertwines with the narratives of iconic artists such as Francis Bacon, Frank Auerbach, Henry Moore, Lucian Freud, Barbara Hepworth, and Paula Rego, Marlborough has been more than just a gallery; it’s been a cultural landmark, a haven for artistic expression, and a home to some of the most profound works of the 20th century.

However, as June approaches, so does the bittersweet end of an era. Marlborough Gallery is set to close its doors, marking the conclusion of a storied chapter in art history. The decision comes amidst a backdrop of reflection on its illustrious past and contemplation of its enduring legacy.

Marlborough Gallery’s journey began in an era where artistic experimentation and innovation flourished. Over the years, it became synonymous with groundbreaking exhibitions, avant-garde movements, and the discovery of emerging talents. Artists flocked to its halls, seeking not only representation but also a platform to showcase their visions to the world.
Yet, like any institution, Marlborough faced its trials and tribulations. In the 1970s, a scandal rocked its foundations, tarnishing its once-sterling reputation. The controversy surrounding Mark Rothko’s estate cast a shadow over the gallery, leading to a legal imbroglio that reverberated through the art world. Accusations of tampering with evidence and selling paintings below market value shook the gallery’s foundation, challenging its integrity and credibility.

Despite this, Marlborough Gallery endured, a testament to its resilience and unwavering commitment to the arts. Its walls continued to resonate with the creativity of the times, showcasing the works of masters and visionaries alike.
As we bid farewell to Marlborough Gallery, we must acknowledge not only its illustrious past but also the impact it has had on shaping the cultural landscape. Its closure marks the end of an era, but its legacy will endure.

In its final moments, Marlborough Gallery stands as a symbol of the profound connections forged between artists, patrons, and enthusiasts—a beacon of inspiration and a reminder of the power of art to transcend boundaries, unite communities, and illuminate the human experience.

Final artist shows include Shizuko Yoshikawa (1934, Ōmuta, Japan – 2019, Zürich, Switzerland) “Possible Progressions” and Nancy Haynes (1947, Waterbury, CT) “Dialects of Silence”

Zentrum Grün (Green Center), 1976, acrylic on wood / Shizuko Yoshikawa

images: Press release / courtesy of Marlborough Gallery

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