Last Paintings


Chris Gollon lived to paint.  In early 2017, despite awaiting major surgery he painted up to the last days before he was admitted to hospital. In this short time, he painted one of his greatest self portraits ‘Figure in a Landscape (Self Portrait)’. In a very gentle painting ‘Woman in a Stream (after Soutine & Rembrandt)’ he makes a reference to two of his favourite painters. In another major work ‘The Card Players’, he deals with ineluctable fate in his nod to Cezanne . In ‘An Encounter With Francis Bacon’  Gollon remembers an evening in South Kensington in the 1980s when a very sloshed Francis Bacon came tottering and zig-zagging toward him.  Bacon almost fell under a taxi cab, had Gollon not pulled at his sleeve to keep him on the pavement and so helped him totter on into the night. Chris Gollon also looked at the presence of death in ‘A Feather Foot’, having read that the late great art critic Robert Hughes saw what the Aboriginals call a ‘feather foot’ during a near-fatal car crash in Australia (p.10 in ‘Things I Didn’t Know’ by Robert Hughes). As he did always, in these last paintings Gollon had a warm but unblinking stare at human existence.