ART ARCHIVES - SOUTH AFRICA
1910 – 1995(?)
Paintings, water-colours, crayon, pastel drawings
No photo of the artist could be traced as yet
Born 1910 in Lancaster, Lancastershire, U.K., his father a wood carver, lived in London from the late 1920s, visiting regularly in his free time museums, later most of the galleries in London. Frank Harling began to paint in pen & ink, water colour and drawing. The International Surrealist Exhibition at the New Burlington Galleries in 1936 left an impression.
In 1934 Frank Harling married Elizabeth Ann Ashcroft at St John the Divine Church, Coppull, Lancashire.
In 1937, he became a member of the “Artist International Association” AIA, London, meeting regularly in Great Newport Street. From November 1937, Frank Harling often met important people at these meetings - Herbert Read, Julian Trevelyan at Durham Wharf, Stanley William (Bill) Hayter (Atelier 17, Paris).
In April, 1939, he was unexpectedly offered a job in Cape Town as a designer for a store fitting firm. By this time, Frank Harling was painting mainly in oils, influenced by the constructivists including Ben Nicholson and John Tunnard. However, very little work from the 1937 to 1947 period survived.
One of the two drawings he submitted for the 1948 Overseas Exhibition of South African Art at the Tate was accepted. The following 10 years were a difficult period in his private life; he also withdrew from any public showings being dissatisfied with his work in spite of repeated invitations by Frank Spears, then President of the SA Association of Arts, Cape Town, to exhibit. Frank Harling worked in isolation on abstract and near abstract compositions and figure studies, sculptural in concept.
In 1957, he was transferred by the Cape Town firm where he had been working as a store designer, to the Transvaal. Extensive travels on business throughout Rhodesia and South Africa followed, limiting his output of art work.
Frank Harling spent his later years living with his daughter near the Florida Lake.
1948 The Tate Gallery, London – included in “Overseas Exhibition of South African Art” organised by the SA Association of Arts, Cape Town – 21st September to 31st October
1962 Gallery 101, Johannesburg (solo)
1984 Gallery 21, Johannesburg (“Miniature Exhibition”) (11th to 26th November) (3 works)
1990 Oliewenhuis Art Museum Bloemfontein - PELMAMA Collection of Contemporary SA Art - January/February
„Infinite Curve” 1971/1972 – painting - meas. n/a
"Flow down", 1984 - Pastel - 44x58 cm (G21 1985 cat X2)
"Images", 1985 - Pastel - 63x92 cm (G21 1985 cat X14) – acquired 1993
"Cleavage” – oil/board – 45.7 x 45.7 cm
Next 6 images: no further data available – works exhibited at Gallery 21, Johannesburg, in 1985 - catalogued
“South African Art” - Exhibition of Contemporary South African Paintings, Drawings and Sculpture (at the Tate) (Long) (SAAA Cape Town) 1948, listed p. 18 (cat. 36 “Figuration” – watercolour – 17”x13”, loaned by artist), p. 31
S.A. Art News, Johannesburg – July 6, 1961, reviewed on p 12
Artlook 47 Johannesburg – Oct. 1970 p. 30, listed under Gallery 101’s full-page advert
“Bibliografie Suid-Afrikaanse Kunstenaars”, 1976, 1986 Vol. 1 + 2
South African Association of Arts, Pretoria – Address List 1981, p. 26
“Art & Artists of South Africa” (Berman) (Balkema), 1983, pp 514, 522, 536
ISBN 0 86961 144 5
“The Dictionary of South African Painters and Sculptors” (Ogilvie) (Read) (1988) p. 276 – ISBN 0 620 12663 9
Citizen, Johannesburg – 23rd February, 1985
The Star, Johannesburg - 23rd February, 1985
Citizen, Johannesburg – 2nd March, 1985 + 13th March, 1985
Vaderland, Johannesburg – 12th March, 1985 (reviewed by Marilyn Martin)
Die Beeld, Johannesburg - 15th March, 1985 (reviewed by Elza Miles)
Citizen, Johannesburg – 8th February, 1986
Bernardi Pretoria – 30th September 2017
“Abstract composition” 1986 – mixed media – meas. n/a – Lot 326 - 0134 - sold
“Abstract composition” 1987 – mixed media – 58x83 cm – Lot 326 - 0135 - sold
Helen G Beatty, London – (see letter 18th April, 1985) acquired from Gallery 101 in 1973
Lord Brooke, Perth WA (3 works by donation Helen G Beatty)
Updated on 29th June, 2019