Psychedelic Painting 1978

Synthetic polymer paint on canvas, 204 x 157

Signed and dated [verso]

Coll.: unknown [last auctioned May 2023]

This double-door sized painting is based on the Paisley patterning Arkley used in several smaller works on paper in or around 1978, the closest being a 2-part drawing preserved in the artist’s archive (SLV MS 14217/1/655: reproduced in Fitzpatrick & Lynn 2015, p.46). See also Psychedelic Painting [study] 1978 [W/P]. Similar patterning recurs in the smaller canvas Psychedelic 1979, and both canvases appeared together in Arkley’s Coventry exhibition in 1980.

Arkley’s archive contains a slide of the present work with process date Jun78, and a photo of the artist standing in front of it at the Coventry Gallery in March 1980 (see exhibition entry).

In May 2023, this canvas reappeared, after having been in private hands for many years, at auction in Western Australia.


  • Private collection, Melbourne
  • Private collection, Perth, 2005
  • Auctioned by GFL Fine Art, Claremont, W.A., 23 May 2023, lot 40 (as “Psychedelic”; with further details, provenance information, and a recent photo, as shown here; est. $180-250,000; sold for $160,000 + B/P)


  • HA Coventry 3/80, cat.10 (as “Psychedelic Painting,” 160 x 204 cm; priced  at $900)