Anne Madden
Irish Abstract Painter. Biography, Paintings.



Aurora. 2006

ABSTRACT ART
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Anne Madden (b.1932)

The Irish abstract painter Anne Madden, the wife of Louis Le Brocquy, was born in London to Irish and Anglo-Chilean parents. Raised in County Clare and in London, she studied drawing and painting at the Chelsea School of Arts and Crafts. During this period Madden encountered and was struck by the new Abstract Expressionism movement. New palette knife and paint flow techniques, together with the use of multiple canvases as a means of creating visual interaction, provided her with a most stimulating and experimental medium.


Le Jardin II, Diptych. 1992

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From 1950, Anne Madden began to exhibit her paintings in group shows in both London and Dublin. While hospitalized during this time, Madden met the Irish painter Louis le Brocquy who was then working in London. Six years later they married and set up a studio in the south of France where they had two sons, Alexis and Pierre.

In 1965, Anne Madden represented Ireland at the Paris Biennale, thereafter becoming a regular exhibitor in the French capital.

During the 1960s, she started painting a series of abstract landscapes reflecting her earlier experiences in the west of Ireland, at the Burren, Co. Clare. The 1970s saw her series of vertical works derived from menhirs, megaliths and other prehistoric monuments. In the 1980s Madden paused to focus on drawing, producing a series of large works on paper executed in graphite and oil paint, which in 1983 formed her exhibition at the Fondation Maeght, and in ROSC 1984. Returning to canvas painting, Madden's output remains undiminished. In 1991, the Arts Council staged a retrospective which was held at the Royal Hibernian Academy Gallagher Gallery in Dublin. In 1994, she published a book on her husband entitled "Louis le Brocquy: Seeing His Way". In 1999, the village of Carros in the south of France commissioned Anne Madden to paint a large vaulted ceiling painting for its medieval castle, which opened last year as an international contemporary art centre. The artist produced Empyrius in her nearby studio before it was mounted in situ as a permanent installation.

During her career, Madden has exhibited her abstract art widely in more than 40 solo exhibitions and her work is represented in Irish art museums and modern art collections worldwide. She is a member of Aosdana.

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• For details of other painters and sculptors from Ireland, see: Irish Artists: Paintings and Biographies.
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