Even those who maintained that British painter and bohemian trailblazer Augustus John never completely fulfilled his early potential would agree that he had few equals as a draughtsman, particularly in portraiture. As well as an astonishing talent and sensitivity these studies reveal a remarkable range of styles, from a kind of late Renaissance sanguine to a modern pencil and wash. One of John’s most affecting pieces captures novelist Ronald Firbank almost disappearing into nothingness. Elsewhere T.E. Lawrence appears in three sketches over the course of a decade; the hero of the Arab campaigns seems to become more human the further he gets from the source of his renown.
British Bohème, Bohemian twilight, Strange Flowers guide to London, part 2 and part 3, To the very dregs, Circles: Evan Morgan, Wyndham Lewis | portrait studies (Augustus John)
Ronald works the room, Concerning the Eccentricities of Ronald Firbank, At home with Ronald Firbank, Doubles: Ronald Firbank, Vainglory (Ronald Firbank)
“Scholar, connoisseur, drunkard, poet, pervert…”, Lady Ottoline Morrell | photographic portraits (W. B. Yeats)