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JACK COUTU A.R.E., A.R.C.A. (1924 - 2017)

“Wood Duck & Drake”

Original Etching and Aquatint with hand colouring by the artist

Signed, numbered, titled & dated ’75 (1975) Number 19 of an edition of 75

Plate size 13 ½” x 21” (340mm x 535mm)

Overall framed size 23” x 29 ¾” (582mm x 755mm)                                                                   IMAGE                      IMAGE

 

I am pleased to be able to offer for sale this wonderful etching by Jack Coutu which I came across recently.  I used to visit Jack to see his work in his studio in his 1960’s modernist house in Wrecclesham where he lived with his sister Peggy.  A lovely fascinating man of great creative and inventive talent.  We would spend time chatting and going through the work in his studio which accommodated a very large printing press which, as he became older, (he was 93 when he died) he had to recruit others to turn for him.

 

 

Jack Coutu was born at Farnham, Surrey on 13th September 1924 and was educated at Farnham Grammar School.  His National Service in the army was from 1942 to 1947 after which he studied sculpture at Farnham School of Art from 1947 to 1951. From 1951 to 1954 he studied Stained Glass at the Royal College of Art and Printmaking at the Central School of Art.  He carried out sculpture and restoration on various churches in London and exhibited his prints at St. Georges Gallery, Cork Street, London from 1954 to 1957.  From 1957 to 1965 he taught etching at the Central School of Art in London and from 1965 to 1985 taught etching at the West Surrey College of Art and Design.  In 1985 he concentrated on carving Netsuke, Inro, Ojimi and Sajemono which he has exhibited at the London Netsuke Convention, Park Lane Hotel, London, at Sothebys, London and at an exhibition of Netsuke at the Surrey Institute of Art and Design.  He has also exhibited with a travelling exhibition of Netsuke which began in 2004.  He has held several one-man shows in London, Farnham and Guildford and has taken part in many group shows at various galleries in London, and also exhibited in Bradford, Oxford, Farnham, Edinburgh, Belfast, Poland, Tokyo, Devon, Horsham, Dorset, Dublin, Guildford, Blackpool, Sweden, Switzerland, and U.S.A.

 

Work by Jack Coutu is in the collections of King Gustave of Sweden; Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, U.S.A; Bradford City Art Gallery, Yorkshire; Arnolfini Art Gallery, Bristol; Victoria and Albert Museum; the Arts Council; City Art Gallery, Leeds; City Art Gallery, Sheffield; the Government Art Collection and Guildford House Gallery, Guildford; the Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney.

 

His obituary in The Times discussed his Netsuke carvings “Inspired by what he observed in his garden and in the hedgerows and fields of southern England, the quiet and reclusive Coutu belonged to the Neo-Romantic generation of artists such as Graham Sutherland and John Piper and infused this sensibility into his Netsuke” (I would have said this applied to all his work)

 

 

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