Ithell Colquhoun (1906 - 1988)

Hyacinth and Cyclamen


SKU: 11135
watercolour on paper, 9 3⁄4 x 9 3⁄4 in. (25 x 25 cm)

Height – 25.4cm
Width – 25.9cm

1 in stock


The Artist’s Studio

Flowers were a recurring subject of Colquhoun’s art. In her view the influence of Dali and Surrealism prophetically ‘took root’ in these studies, which combine naturalistic observation with symbolism which reflected the artist’s profound interest in Occultism and esoteric theories.

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Ithell Colquhoun
1906 - 1988

Ithell Colquhoun studied at Cheltenham Art School (1925’7) and
the Slade School of Fine Art (1927’31), winning joint first prize
with Elizabeth Leslie Arnold (1909′ 2005) in the 1929 Summer
Composition Competition. 

After discovering Surrealism in Paris in 1932, she held her first
solo exhibition at Cheltenham Art Gallery in 1936 and in 1939
joined the British Surrealist Group, showing alongside Roland
Penrose (1900’1984) at the Mayor Gallery that June. She was
particularly interested in automatic painting and how it could unlock
not just the unconscious mind but also the mystical. 

Despite her expulsion from the English Surrealist Group
in 1940 due to her increasing preoccupation with the occult,
Colquhoun remained active in Surrealist circles ‘ she was married to
Toni del Renzio from 1943’48. She wrote and illustrated numerous
books, including The Living Stones: Cornwall (1957), and exhibited
at the Leicester Galleries and with the LG and WIAC. She took part
in several Surrealist retrospectives in the 1970s, including a solo show
at the Newlyn Gallery in 1976, and the terms of her will bequeathed
her studio (over 3000 works) to the National Trust.


Ithell Colquhoun (1906 - 1988)
Crane Flowers (Bird of Paradise or Strelitzia reginae)
Ithell Colquhoun (1906 - 1988)
Highland Landscape, 1965
Ithell Colquhoun (1906 - 1988)
Hyacinth and Cyclamen
Ithell Colquhoun (1906 - 1988)
Autumnal Equinox
Ithell Colquhoun (1906 - 1988)
La Cathédrale Engloutie, circa 1950
Ithell Colquhoun (1906 - 1988)
Past and Future, circa 1950