Brian Clarke’s first London exhibition was organised in 1981 by the Royal Institute of British Architects in association with the Robert Fraser Gallery.
In June 1981, Graham Hughes wrote in Arts Review:
‘A unique blend of painting and sculpture, geometry and fantasy, humanity and mechanics. "Constructivism", by which Clarke is sometimes labelled, suggests bulldozers at work on a derelict mud patch, rather than this extraordinary subtle mixture. Great slabs of uniform colour may be peppered with tiny crosses or dots, or they may have just one big event in the middle. The patterns tend to be strong enough to be unavoidable, yet weak enough to grip the visitor by their eccentricity. Colours are subtle more than outrageous, the patches of virtuoso drawing or photomontage are more discreet than dominant. What is consistent is the originality. Clarke is a true original, at home in any media but in no pigeonhole. Already the darling of New York, where he spends much of his time, the sheer power of his activity will soon conquer London too. Painter, sculptor, photographer, brilliant draughtsman almost in the renaissance manner, glazier and printmaker, his is a dazzling achievement. Whether his art is really as substantial as his versatility, whether the whole of many repeated details like crosses and dots really add up to much more than the parts, the visitor must decide.’