n Autumn 2017, Austin/Desmond Fine Art will present an exhibition of rare vintage photographs and collages by the British artist Keith Vaughan (1912-1977). Dating from the 1930s, the majority of these images have never previously been seen or exhibited. Recording the visits made by the artist and a close coterie of male friends to Pagham Beach (located near Bognor Regis in West Sussex), these works were known to have existed and were often alluded to in published studies on the artist, but their whereabouts have always remained a mystery. The re- emergence of this remarkable collection will confirm the central role that photography played in Vaughan's artistic development. As a self-taught painter and photographer, many of these vintage photographs are the source material Vaughan used for drawings, gouaches and oils created after the Second World War. In every way, they are the foundation that led to the artistic evolution of one of Britain's most renowned twentieth century figurative painters. 2017 marks the fortieth anniversary of Vaughan's death, which also coincides with the fiftieth anniversary of the repeal of the 'Labouchere amendment' of 1887 and the passing of the Sexual Offenses Act in 1967, which legalised homosexuality between consenting adults - behaviour which for the previous eighty years had been liable to prosecution and imprisonment with hard labour for up to two years. Six other photographs from the Pagham period were reproduced in Alan Ross' authorised publication of Vaughan's frank Journals & Drawings in 1966. This book was itself a brave gesture, given that it preceded the change of legislation by a year. The photographs supplied by Vaughan for reproduction in Journals & Drawings were subsequently lost by the publishers.
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