Belgrave St Ives - Modern & Contemporary Art

Margo Maeckelberghe

Margo Maeckelberghe (1932-2014)

Born: Penzance, Cornwall

Studied: Bath Academy of Art 1949-52, Penzance School of Art,

Taught in London and Gibraltar for 2 years
Returned to Cornwall 1950s
Elected Chair of the Penwith Society of Artists 1990s - present
Elected Cornish Bard 1997

Recent exhibitions:

Margo Maeckelberghe - Extended Landscape, Tate Gallery, St. Ives
Margo Maeckelberghe - Works on Paper, Belgrave Gallery St. Ives.

Brief Overview:

Maeckelberghe is one of Cornwall's leading landscape artists. During her time at Bath Academy of Art, William Scott, Peter Lanyon, Bryan Wynter, Kenneth Armitage and Terry Frost were all teaching. She stayed for an extra year to work as Scott's studio assistant. Scott placed an emphasis on an expression that was economical. She attributed the achievement of 'supreme simplicity' in her work to the influence of Scott. When returning to Cornwall, from London and Gibraltar, she developed her well known dynamic painterly style, focussing on the Penwith peninsula where she was born and continues to reside. Sweeping, often horizontal lines, set the stage for moody scenes of the moor and sea. Boulders and cliffs often frame the canvas. She has exhibited coastal landscape art since the early 1960s and her work is held in many private and public collections.


Key Quotes:

A Denys Val Baker interview with Maeckelberghe for Cornish Review led to a piece of dialogue in his short story 'A Work of Art' in which she describes her method and inspiration: The most important part of it all for me is this mysterious X an artist must feel about the place to paint and be true to his art. There's the shimmering of pale bleached grasses, surging half-seen rocks, mist, rain, storm, sun on moors and headlands, and of course skies and skies...that's part of what I try to paint.Marion Whybrow's book St Ives. Portrait of an Art Colony (1994), she quotes Maeckelberghe:
I don't paint places but try to show the thrust of a wave or the weight of water, or the feel of an approaching storm and the light breaking on the horizon. A painting has to be abstract to harness and structure the way that the land meets the force of another element, the sea.Davies has described her heartfelt rapport for the sea and its mysterious 1982 Maeckelberghe said: Painting's your chance to make a statement, to put your signature on Life.Tate Gallery St. Ives has said: Head for St Ives. We will not see native Cornish art of this quality for a long, long time.