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Dunbar, Evelyn

(1906 – 1960)

Sleeping Beauty, 10 minute sketch, c.1928 (HMO 786)

SKU: 6286

Inscribed in pencil with title, probably by Florence Dunbar
Oil on canvas

Size:
Height: 48cm
Width: 33cm

DESCRIPTION

Provenance:
Roger Folley; Alasdair Dunbar; Hammer Mill Oast Collection

Exhibited: Evelyn Dunbar – The Lost Works, Pallant House Gallery, October 2015 – February 2016.

Literature: Evelyn Dunbar – The Lost Works, eds Sacha Llewellyn & Paul Liss, July 2015, cat. 12, page 44:Evelyn Dunbar: A Life in Painting, Christopher Campbell-Howes, October 2016, page 51.

Llewellyn, Sacha, and Paul Liss. Portrait of an Artist. Liss Llewellyn, 2021, p.130.

Dunbar presumably painted this endearing portrait of her father William, then about 66, after lunch one day. Always careful of dressing well, as befitted a bespoke tailor, even during the course of an after-lunch nap during which he has slipped down inside his jacket, he has a rose in his button-hole. The pencil inscription Sleeping Beauty 10 minute sketch, on the lower part of the canvas, appears to have been written by Florence, William’s wife.


We are grateful to Christopher Campbell-Howes for assistance.

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THE ARTIST

Dunbar, Evelyn

1906 – 1960

Evelyn Dunbar studied at Rochester School of Art, Chelsea School
of Art (1927) and the Royal College of Art (1929’33). She painted
murals from 1933 -36 at Brockley School, a collaboration with her
RCA tutor (and lover) Cyril Mahoney (1903’1968) and in 1937
they wrote and illustrated together Gardeners’ Choice. 

In 1938 she set up the Blue Gallery in Rochester, exhibiting her
own work alongside that of Edward Bawden (1903’1989) and
Barnett Freedman (1901’1958) and others. In 1940 she was
appointed an official war artist, becoming the only woman (amongst
36 men) to be given a full time salaried position by the WAAC. 

She held her only solo exhibition at Withersdane, Wye, Kent
in 1953, although the WAAC included numerous pieces in touring
exhibitions ranging from Aberdeen Art Gallery to MOMA, New York. 

A posthumous exhibition was held in 2006 at St Barbe
Museum and Art Gallery, and in 2015 Liss Llewellyn mounted a
major retrospective of her recently rediscovered studio at Pallant
House Gallery. 

MORE PICTURES BY ARTIST

Evelyn Dunbar
Study for July, Gardeners Diary 1938, 1937
£1,850.00
Evelyn Dunbar
Studies for Mercatora, an allegorical painting (whereabouts unknown) [HMO 173]
£2,500.00
Evelyn Dunbar
Colour study for sub-gallery spandrels at Brockley County School for Boys [HMO 551]
£2,350.00
Evelyn Dunbar
Portrait of the artist Margaret Goodwin
£2,950.00