Frost became more interested in colour during the 1960s – a reflection of wider concerns within the abstract art world. This painting can be seen as relating to the work of Ellsworth Kelly, who pioneered a style of painting using shapes of bold colour. Frost himself connected the composition with the female form, titling a relief version of this painting ‘Mae West’ after the famous pin-up
June, Red and Black
Date of work
Born in Warwickshire in 1915, Frost started painting while being held as a prisoner of war in Germany in 1943, an experience he later described as an ‘awakening’. He moved to St Ives in the 1950s, where he became an influential member among the modernist artists based there. By the late 50s he has established a reputation as one of Britain’s leading British abstract artists. His paintings are shaped by a rare perception of landscape, including a formative period in Yorkshire, where his work took on strong monochromatic contrasts. His later works deployed a strong use of colour and became more three dimensional in form.