John Tunnard Surrealist Landscape

Composition, 1947, a gouache on paper by John Tunnard, estimated at £30,000-50,000 at Lyon & Turnbull.

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1. John Tunnard’s Surrealist landscape

Among the highlights of the inaugural Avant Garde sale at Lyon & Turnbull on April 27 is this rediscovered prime period work by John Tunnard (1900-1971).

The meticulously painted gouache on paper Composition, 1947 was acquired by the vendor’s father directly from the artist in the 1960s and has not been seen in public for at least half a century.

Painted just after the Second World War, this Surrealist landscape depicts a series of futuristic antennae and ancient megaliths and henges – plus the ‘dry tree’ motif Tunnard used as a symbol of destruction and death.

It is one of just 13 known gouaches from 1947 with others of a similar style and quality held in American museum collections. It is expected to bring £30,000-50,000.

View the catalogue entry for this John Tunnard picture on

2. Alan Davie abstract

Bird Cage No.1 by Alan Davie

Bird Cage No.1 by Alan Davie, estimated at £15,000-20,000 at Sworders.

The artist Alan Davie (1920-2014) was one of the first British artists of his generation to be influenced by the American Abstract Expressionists, having viewed the Peggy Guggenheim exhibition at the Venice Biennale in 1949.

Like Jackson Pollock, Davie would create his works by laying them on the floor although his brushwork in 'Bird Cage 1', a mid-1950s oil on board, appears a bit more controlled and the composition more representational than others. However, measuring 4ft x 5ft (1.22 x 152.5cm), the scale and bold handling of the paint was reminiscent of the New York school.

The signed picture from 1956 will be offered at Sworders’ sale of Modern and Contemporary Art on April 25 in Stansted Mountfitchet, Essex. The catalogue states that the work demonstrates the ‘talents of this unique artist at a pivotal point in his career’.

It is estimated at £15,000-20,000 at Sworders.

View the catalogue entry for this Alan Davie abstract on

3. Ben Nicholson relief

Ben Nicholson relief

An untitled relief by Ben Nicholson, estimated at £40,000-60,000 at Mallams.

This untitled work from c.1945 by Ben Nicholson (1894-1982) comprises a mahogany relief applied with oil paint. It will be offered at Mallams’ of Oxford on May 17-18 as part of its Modern Art & Design sale.

The vendor received the 7.75 x 11in (20 x 28cm) piece as a gift from Nicholson's daughter Kate in c.1997.

The back is inscribed 'Nicholson Chy An Kerris, Carbis Bay, St Ives' – a reference to the house called Chy-an-Kerris on the far side of Carbis Bay to which the Nicholsons moved in September 1942.

The artist began making shallow reliefs in the 1930s, reducing their colour in terms of plainness to achieve a sense of purity, as shown in the current lot which is estimated at £40,000-60,000 at Mallams.

View the catalogue entry for this Ben Nicholson relief on

4. Jamini Roy’s maiden

Jamini Roy painting

Untitled (A Maiden), gouache on paper by Jamini Roy, estimated at £2500-3500 at Olympia Auctions.

The Asian and Islamic Works of Art sale at Olympia Auctions in London on April 26 includes two paintings by the celebrated Bengali artist Jamini Roy (1887-1972). Having trained in traditional techniques from the age of 16 at the Government College of Art in Kolkata, Roy became celebrated for the way he combined traditional Indian and Western styles. He received the Padma Bhushan award in 1954, the third highest civilian honour in India.

From the estate of Louisa Service OBE (1931-2021) is this 1950s gouache on paper Untitled (A Maiden), signed in Bengali to the lower right. It measures 2ft 3in x 13in (68 x 32cm) and is estimated at £2500-3500 at the Olympia sale.

View the catalogue entry for this Jamini Roy picture on

5. Prunella Clough painting

Prunella Clough painting

An untitled painting by Prunella Clough, estimated at £6000-8000 at Lyon & Turnbull.

A small 1950s painting by Prunella Clough (1919-1999) is offered at Lyon & Turnbull’s Modern Made sale on April 28.

A successful artist, she also pursued a teaching career over 40 years, firstly at Chelsea School of Art and latterly at Wimbledon School of Art, having a direct influence on several younger generations of artists.

Three years before her death, the artist said: “Nothing that I do is ‘abstract’. I can locate all the ingredients of a painting in the richness of the outside world, the world of perception.”

This untitled 8 x 6in oil on board is estimated at £6000-8000 at Lyon & Turnbull. View the catalogue entry for this Prunella Clough painting on