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 Terry (TP) Flanagan  (1929 - 2011)

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Lived/Active: United Kingdom/Ireland      Known for: watercolor landscape painting, teaching

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This biography from the Archives of AskART:
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TP Flanagan RUA (b.1929)

The respected landscape watercolourist TP "Terry" Flanagan was born in Enniskillen, County Fermanagh.  He learned the arts of watercolour painting from the famous local portraitist and landscape artist Kathleen Bridle when in his late teens.  Later, he painted her portrait - now in the Ulster Museum - and interviewed her in a film of her life and art, which was produced shortly before her death in 1989.

After Bridle, Flanagan attended Belfast College of Art from 1949-53, and the following year joined the teaching staff at St. Mary’s College of Education, where he remained for 28 years, in due course becoming Head of the Art Department.

TP Flanagan spent the majority of his painting career in Ireland, but his landscapes have received wide attention and his work has been recognized both in Ireland and abroad.  His first solo exhibition was held at CEMA, Belfast in 1961, while he also showed regularly at the Hendriks Gallery in Dublin and at the Tom Caldwell Gallery in Belfast in the 1970s and 80s.

He has participated in many group exhibitions, including "Four Ulster Painters" at the Arnolfini Gallery, Bristol (1965), "Two Irish Painters" (with Colin Middleton) at the Herbert Art Gallery & Museum, Coventry, (1968) and was represented in "The Gordon Lambert Collection Exhibitions" held at the Hugh Lane Gallery of Modern Art, Dublin (1972) and the Ulster Museum (1976). In addition, he exhibited at the Royal Hibernian Academy (RHA) in Dublin and at the Royal Ulster Academy Of Arts (RUA) in Belfast.

Abroad, Flanagan has exhibited at the Armstrong Gallery, New York (1986) and the Concept Gallery, Pittsburgh.  A retrospective of his painting from the period 1967-77 was held at the Arts Council of Northern Ireland in 1977.  In 1995, the Ulster Museum staged a major retrospective of his paintings (1945-1995).  Other retrospectives were held at the Hugh Lane Gallery in Dublin and the Stadsmusueum, Gothenberg, Sweden.  His pictures were also included in the show "A Century of Irish Painting" organized by the Hugh Lane Gallery which toured Japanese Museums in 1995.

As an artist, Flanagan works in oils as well as his favourite watercolours; although by rapid application of the paint - with minimal overworking - even his oils manage to retain the luminous colouring of the watercolourist. He specializes in landscape painting within his native County Fermanagh and the adjoining County Sligo, his methods being ideally suited to capturing the soft atmospheric light of Ireland’s north-west.

TP Flanagan was elected associate of the RUA in 1960, a full member in 1964, and President 1978-82. During his long career, he has received numerous commissions and other awards for his works, which are represented in the collections of The Arts Councils of Ireland & Northern Ireland, the Ulster Museum, the Hugh Lane Municipal Gallery of Modern Art, Dublin, Irish Museum of Modern Art, and the National Self-Portrait Collection, Limerick.

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