Albert Irvin's large-scale abstract paintings are amongst the most compelling and distinctive produced in Britain to date.


Irvin was studying at the Northampton School of Art, when his studies were cut short by his joining the Royal Air Force in 1941, to serve as a navigator in World War II. He returned to his passion for art in 1946, when he enrolled at Goldsmith’s College in London and graduated four years late with a National Diploma in Design. Irvin later returned to Goldsmith’s as a teacher in 1962, where he remained for over twenty years.


Throughout the 1950’s, Irvin developed his unique style of literal meaning through his painting, battling with the two alternatives of abstraction and figuration. It was not until the mid-1950’s that Irvin finally moved away from relying on figures and social realism in his work and embraced an approach closer to metaphor and abstract. Irvin’s reputation began to swell in the art world as his paintings grew in merit, maturity of style and value. He was invited to display his work at more and more exhibitions in both Britain and abroad. A new freedom to experiment also found its way into his work as he ‘played’ with canvas size, colour, structure, shape and composition. His first one-man show was held in 1960 at the 57 Gallery, Edinburgh. From 1961 he held a series of shows at the New Art Centre, London and at the Serpentine Gallery, London.


Paul Moorhouse, Tate curator and author of the book Albert Irvin: Life to Painting, wrote of him: 'even to those familiar with his work, seeing a new painting by Irvin can be an extraordinary experience akin to discovering a young, energetic artist in the first flush of ambition. Given the force of its restless energy, its freshness and the sense it communicates of an artist in love with his chosen activity, it is even more surprising to realise that this is the work of an artist in his late seventies.'


In 1968 Irvin won an Arts Council Travel Award to America, seven years later gaining an Arts Council Major Award.


Later, Irvin began to experiment with the medium of his art. He changed from oil acrylic in the early 1970’s and had a short-lived foray into lithography in 1975. He then began a screen-printing career in 1980 with Advanced Graphics London. The collaborative approach of screen-printing, although a new and very different outlet from painting, still allowed Irvin to display many of his characteristic traits as an artist. He quickly affirmed his reputation as one of Britain’s foremost printmakers.


Public Collections 
Aberdeen Art Gallery
Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney
Arts Council of Great Britain
Birmingham City Art Gallery
Blackburn Art Gallery
British Council
Huddersfield Art Gallery
Irish Museum of Modern Art, Dublin
Manchester City Art Gallery
Mappin Gallery, Sheffield
Neue Gallerie der Stadt Linz, Austria
New England Regional Art Gallery, NSW, Australia
Pensecola Museum, Florida
Schindler Collection, Zurich
St'dtische Kunstsammlungen, Ludwigshafen, Germany
Stoke City Art Gallery
Stuyvesant Collection, Holland
Tate Gallery, London
Victoria and Albert Museum, London
Wolverhampton Art Gallery



MOORHOUSE, Paul. Albert Irvin: Life to Painting: Painting into Life. London, 1998.

BEAUMONT, Mary Rose. Albert Irvin: The Complete Prints. London, 1998.


Selected Solo Exhibitions

2017, Albert Irvin: The Eary Years 1950 - 1970, Whitford Fine Art, London

 2015, Albert Irvin: Painting the Human Spirit, Gimpel Fils, London 

 2012, Albert Irvin, Borris House, Barrow River Arts Festival, Ireland; Albert Irvin: 90th Year Celebration Paintings and prints, Bohun Gallery; Albert Irvin at 90: a survey exhibition, Clifford Chance, London; Fidelio, Gimpel Fils, London; Royal Oak, Monoprints, Advanced Graphics London, London

2011, Print Retrospective, University Gallery and Baring Wing, University of Northumbria, Newcastle; Inextinguishable, Gimpel Fils, London; Albert Irvin RA: From Holyrood to Stratford, Sir Hugh Casson Room, Royal Academy, London; Fidelio, Gimpel Fils, London 
2010, New Work, Gimpel Fils, London; Print Retrospective, Advanced Graphics London/ Kings Place, London; Tabard: Albert Irvin, Churchill College, Cambridge
2010, Tabard: Albert Irvin, Churchill College, Cambridge
2009, Albert Irvin: A Retrospective, University Gallery and Baring Wing, University of Northumbria, Newcastle ; Albert Irvin, galerie gimpel & Müller, Paris 
2008, Albert Irvin, Manton Wing staircase display, Tate Britain, London; Albert Irvin, Peppercanister, Dublin; Recent Prints, Advanced Graphics London; Albert Irvin: A Retrospective, Kings Place Gallery; Albert Irvin: Six Paintings, Kings Place Foyer 
2006, Urban Journey, Gimpel Fils, London; New Works, Peppercanister Gallery, Dublin
2005-2006, New Editions and Monoprints, Advanced Graphics, London
2004-2005, Midsummer, Gimpel Fils, London

2003, Paintings and Prints, Storey Gallery, Lancaster, Peppercanister Gallery, Dublin
2002, Four Score, Gimpel Fils, London; Malerei, Galerie Stuhler, Berlin
2001, Paintings & Prints 1991-2001, West Cork Arts Centre, Skibbereen
2000, Prints & Paintings 1980-2000, Advanced Graphics, London
1999, Royal West of England Academy, Bristol; Orion Gallery, Brussels
1998, Abbaye Saint-André, Centre d'art contemporain, Meymac; Dean Clough Gallery, Halifax; Works on paper - touring German museums; Gimpel Fils, London, celebrating the launch of 'Albert Irvin - Life to Painting', monograph, pub.Lund Humphries, London.
1997, Galerie Stöhler, Berlin; Galerie Wassermann, Berlin
1996/7, Gimpel Fils, London 
1996, Millfield School, Somerset; Oriel Theatre, Clwyd
1995, Royal Hibernian Academy, Dublin 
1994, Powell Moya Partnership, London; Gimpel Fils, London; Wasserman Galerie, Munich; Chapter Gallery, Cardiff; Woodlands Art Gallery
1993, Campo Vlaamse Kaai, Antwerp; Bodilly Gallery, Cambridge; Flowers Graphics – Prints; Design for Diversions Dance Company
1992, Galeria Punto, Valencia; Chelmsford Cathedral Festival; Oxford Gallery; Galerie Klaus Lupke, Frankfurt; Gimpel Fils, London; Wolf At The Door, Penzance
1991, Playhouse Gallery, Harlow; Peter Scott Gallery, Lancaster University; Flowers East, London - Prints
1990, Serpentine Gallery, London; Gimpel Fils, London; Spacex Gallery, Exeter; Oriel and Chapter Galleries, Cardiff; Castlefield Gallery, Manchester; Gallery Monochrome, Brussels
1989, Talbot Rice Gallery, Edinburgh; Carine Campo Gallery, Antwerp
1988, Gimpel & Weitzenhoffer Gallery, New York
1987, Carine Campo Gallery, Antwerp
1986, Gimpel Fils, Londo, Hendriks Gallery, Dublin
1985, Coventry Gallery, Sydney; Butler Gallery, Kilkenny Castle, Kilkenny; Arcade Gallery, Harrogate
1984, Gimpel Fils, London; Demarcation, Edinburgh Festiva; Jersey Arts Council Gallery
1983, Third Eye Centre Gallery, Glasgow; Aberdeen Art Gallery; Ikon Gallery, Birmingham
1982, Gimpel Fils, London ; Goldsmiths College Gallery, London 
1981, Manchester Polytechnic Gallery
1980, Acme Gallery, London ; Bede Gallery, Jarrow 
1978, Newcastle Polytechnic Gallery
1976, New 57 Gallery, Edinburgh ; Aberdeen Art Gallery ; Galerie Klaus Löpke, Frankfurt
1975, Deutsche Opera, Berlin
1974, Stödtische Kunstsammlungen, Ludwigshafen; Galerie 2, Stuttgart
1973, New Art Centre, London
1972, Galerie Folker Skulima, Berlin, and regularly during the 1970s Galerie Klaus Löpke, Frankfurt
1971, New Art Centre, London
1969, Exe Gallery, Exeter
1966, Richard Demarco Gallery, Edinburgh
1964, Edinburgh University
1963, New Art Centre, London
1961, New Art Centre, London
1960, 57 Gallery, Edinburgh 


Selected Group Shows since 1980

2013, Royal Academy Summer Exhibition, Royal Academy, London; Alan Davie RA and Albert Irvin RA, Gimpel Fils, London; London Group Centenary Exhibition, Pitzhanger Manor Gallery & House, London; British Prints, Gimpel Fils, London; The Horse that has Visions of Immortality, Gimpel Fils, London


2012, Summer Exhibition, Kings Space Gallery, London; Barrow River Arts Festival, Borris House, Ireland; Encounter: The Royal Academy in Asia, Singapore; Encounter: The Royal Academy in The Middle East, Doha


2011, Summer Exhibition, Royal Academy, London


2010, Come to Richmond, The Richmond Hill Gallery, Surrey; Summer Exhibition, Royal Academy, London; Colour is the Keyboard, Gimpel Fils, London


2009, Open Exhibition, The London Group, London; Summer Exhibition, Royal Academy, London


2008, Summer Exhibition, Royal Academy, London; The Colour Show, Hilton Young Fine Art, Penzance


2007, Summer Exhibition, Royal Academy, London


2006, Summer Exhibition, Royal Academy, London; Summer Exhibition, Lemon Street Gallery, Cornwall; Realités Nouvelles, Paris; Painting by Other Means: Non-figurative works from the collection of the Irish Museum of Modern Art, Oriel Mostyn Gallery, Wales


2005, Summer Exhibition, Royal Academy, London; 1979, Bloomberg SPACE, London; The Discerning Eye, Mall Galleries, London


2004, Summer Exhibition, Royal Academy, London; 174th RHA Annual Exhibition, RHA Gallagher Gallery, Dublin; Tracing the Land, Gimpel Fils, London


2003, The London Group, Peter Clossick at The Gallery in Cork Street; Summer Exhibition, Royal Academy, London; Cabinet Paintings, Compass Gallery, Glasgow


2001-2, Square Root, Sarah Myerscough Gallery, London


2001, Summer Exhibition, Royal Academy, London; Selection from Collection of Royal Bank of Scotland, City Art Gallery, Edinburgh; Works on Paper, Galerie Stuhler, Berlin; Zen and the Art of Cities, Rivington Gallery, London; Create Quarters, Museum of London; RWA, Bristol; RHA, Dublin; The London Group', Walk Gallery, London


2000, Small is Beautiful, Flowers East, London; Local Colour, Bury St. Edmunds Gallery; City Art Gallery, London; Summer Prospects, Orion Gallery, Ostend; 5 British Painters, Flowers West, Los Angeles; Galerie Stuhler, Berlin; Summer Exhibition, Royal Academy, London; The Discerning Eye, Mall Galleries, London; Advanced Graphics at Original Print Gallery, Dublin


1999, The Discerning Eye, Mall Galleries, London; Kunst Schmuck Kunst, Galerie Stuhler, Berlin; Compas Gallery, Glasgow; 21, Spacex Gallery, Exeter; Small is Beautiful, Flowers West, Los Angeles; Summer Exhibition, Royal Academy, London


1998, The Discerning Eye, Mall Galleries, London; 25 Years of the Visual Arts, Bulter Gallery, Kilkenny; Summer Exhibition, Royal Academy, London


1997, The Subjects of Art, Nat West Group Art Collection


1996, Small is Beautiful, Flowers East, London


1995, Cabinet Art, Jason and Rhodes, London; 10 Years in Galerie Im Griechenbeisl, Vienna; British Abstract Painting, Atkinson, Millfield, Somerset


1994, Here and Now, Serpentine Gallery, London; Painters and Prints, Curwen Gallery, London; Castlefield 10th Anniversary, Castlefield Gallery and Whitworth Art Gallery, Manchester; Contemporary Prints, Flowers Graphics; British Abstract Painting, Flowers East, London; Critics Choice, Clare Henry, NS Gallery, Glasgow; 12 Contemporary British Printmakers, Karelian Republic Art Museum, Russia


1993, CCA Galleries, London; Flowers East Gallery, London; Egyptian International Print Triennale; The Byker Art Show, Newcastle


1992, Royal Academy Summer Exhibition (Invited artist), 1993, 1994 and 1995, Whitechapel Open (Invited artist)


1991-3, Courtauld Institute Loan Collection


1991, Bradford Print Biennale at Royal College of Art, London; Gimpel Fils - Bath Festival (with Alan Davie); Downeen Collection, Co. Cork, Ireland; Guinness Hop Store, Dublin - European large format printmaking; Goldsmiths' College, University of London, Centenary Exhibition (Selector); Peter Stuyvesant Collection Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam


1990, Great British Art Show, McLellan Galleries, Glasgow


1989, International Print Biennale, Ljubljana; The Experience of Painting, Laing Gallery, Newcastle, touring


1988, Beattie, Hoyland, Irvin, Sunderland; Presence of Painting, Mappin Art Gallery, Sheffield, touring; Carine Campo Gallery, Antwerp; European Biennale Graphic Art, Baden-Baden


1987, Royal Academy (prizewinner), and in 1988, 1989; [prizewinner], 1990 and 1991


1986, Bradford Print Biennale (prizewinner) and in 1990


1985, Home and Abroad, Serpentine Gallery


1984, ROSC '84, Dublin


1983, Contemporary British Painters, Madrid


1982, Hayward Annual


1980, Hayward Annual, Hayward Gallery, London; John Moores Liverpool, and in 1982 (prizewinner) 1987, 1989 and 1991, 1995