David Vaughan: Black on Canvas
Directed by: Dean Brocklehurst
David Vaughan found a place as an artist at the heart of swinging London in the 1960’s. Culture in the capital was changing and he took a chance. Bringing together Vaughan’s wives, children, and fellow artists, as well as showing Vaughan’s work and writing, director Dean Brocklehurst puts together a vivid portrait. Vaughan became known for painting psychedelic shapes on cars and customising furniture; he even did that for Paul McCartney’s piano, which shows how much he both immersed himself in his time and helped define it. His dedication to his art was unbending, but that came to a cost: he started dealing with bipolar disorder and his family speaks about how his struggle put them all in danger. “People are intrigued” reflects Vaughan’s daughter as she prepares an exhibition of her father’s work – and so is the director. He handles the topic with great tact, yet this doesn’t refrain him from shining a sympathetic light on a man of raw talent. In fact, this gives deeper insight into the existence of a human being whose inner life was so dark he bordered on madness, but was so rich he became a major artist of his era.