Tirzah Garwood-Ravilious (1908 - 1951)

The Dog Show, 1929


SKU: 11147

Original engraving on boxwood, printed from the blocks in an edition of 500 copies on 225gsm Zerkall mould-made paper by Ian Mortimer at I.M. Imprimit., circa 1989

This engraving and The Crocodile were commissioned in 1929 by Oliver Simon for a projected but never completed calendar to have been published by the Curwen Press.

Height – 29.7cm
Width – 21cm

2 in stock


Merivale Editions; Simon Lawrence

Literature: Llewellyn, Sacha, et al. Women Only Works on Paper. Liss Llewellyn, 2021, p. 70.

In 1925, at the age of 17, Tirzah Garwood enrolled at Eastbourne School of Art, where, under the
instruction of her young tutor, Eric Ravilious, (whom she would marry five years later), she excelled in
wood engraving. Her satirical scenes of bourgeois life in 1920’s Britain explored themes such as bathers
on Eastbourne beach, window cleaners and plump ladies shopping in Kensington. By 1927, she was
already exhibiting and attracting attention for her work, and received prestigious commissions from
the BBC and the Curwen Press. The Crocodile and The Dog Show were commissioned in 1929 by Oliver
Simon for a projected but never completed calendar to have been published by the Curwen Press. Both
engravings, however, were shown at the English Wood Engraving Society’s 1929 exhibition to critical
acclaim. The Queen (25th December 1929) compared the puckish humour’ of Garwood’s work to that
of Honoré-Victorin Daumier, describing The Dog Show as wicked’ and The Crocodile as that amusing bit
of observation’, while Apollo (January 1930) wrote, Miss Tirzah Garwood is, as one expects it of her by
now, intensely amusing, especially in The Dog Show’.

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Tirzah Garwood-Ravilious
1908 - 1951

Eileen ‘Tirzah’ Garwood attended Eastbourne School of Art (1925’28), where she was taught by Eric Ravilious (1903 – 1942) whom she married in 1930.

She first exhibited in 1927, at the Redfern Gallery, and an early woodcut shown at the 1927 SWE exhibition received significant praise in The Times. Such was the originality of her printmaking that she exerted an influence over Ravilious’ own wood engravings. She was also commissioned by the BBC in 1928 to illustrate Granville Bantock’s The Pilgrim’s Progress, and made whimsical but exacting observational pictures that were popular with children and exhibited by the Society for Education in Art.

While recovering from emergency mastectomy surgery in 1942 she wrote her autobiography, Long Live Great Bardfield & Love to You All (published posthumously in 2012). After Ravilious’ death that same year, Garwood remained in Essex until her remarriage in 1946. She was again diagnosed with cancer in 1948 and died in 1951. In 1952, a memorial exhibition was held at the Towner Gallery in Eastbourne.


Tirzah Garwood-Ravilious (1908 - 1951)
The Crocodile
Tirzah Garwood-Ravilious (1908 - 1951)
The Dog Show, 1929
Tirzah Garwood-Ravilious (1908 - 1951)
Background to Toy Train, 1950
Tirzah Garwood-Ravilious (1908 - 1951)
Daren, Baker’s Shop, 1945-46
Tirzah Garwood-Ravilious (1908 - 1951)
Vegetable Garden, circa 1933
Tirzah Garwood-Ravilious (1908 - 1951)
House at Great Bardfield, 1945