Forthcoming

Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)

Three sketchbooks

SKU: 6751
Three sketchbooks



Size:
Height – 40.5cm
Width – 27.5cm

DESCRIPTION

Provenance:
The Artist’s family
Presentation:
folio
Exhibited: Evelyn Dunbar – The Lost Works, Pallant House Gallery, October 2015 – February 2016.
Literature: Evelyn Dunbar – The Lost Works, Sacha Llewellyn & Paul Liss, July 2015, cat 121page 171.
Some pages from sketchbooks cat 121 and 122

  

  

  


In general Dunbar preferred loose cartridge paper for her sketch work, but occasionally she resorted to cheap sketch books if ever she had a single idea to work out in many examples. One such dates from 1935, when Dunbar was working out tartan-based designs for the cover of The Scots Week-End and Caledonian Vade Mecum for Host, Guest and Wayfarer, a miscellany which she illustrated with line drawings.

Sketchbooks & Ephemera


“When Evelyn Dunbar enrolled at the Royal College of Art in 1929 it was a toss-up
as to whether she would apply for the Design School or the Painting School and although
Painting won she maintained a strong interest in design and included many designerdraughtsmen among her friends, particularly Edward Bawden and Barnett Freedman.
Like them she enjoyed free-hand pattern-making and filled many sketchbooks with
pictorial jottings of people, places and incidents which could be worked up later when
required into vignettes to decorate such publications as The Scots Week-End (page
170) and Gardeners’ Choice (pages 82-95). Equally, they could be incorporated into
subject paintings like The Days of the Week, or used in any one of her other decorative
projects. Whether working in sketchbooks or on loose scraps of paper she was happy
drawing in line either with pen or pencil, or with clean strokes of a well-charged brush,
using the latter particularly to create decorative patterns often reminiscent of Vanessa
Bell’s designs for Hogarth Press bookjackets for her sister’s ‚Äì Virginia Woolf’s ‚Äì novels.
Through Mahoney and other Royal College contacts she would also have been familiar
with the work of the Curwen Press, particularly the pattern papers inspired by the
recently deceased Claud Lovat Fraser and produced by Paul Nash, Edward Bawden,
Enid Marx and others.
In her early days she had a natural playfulness which is reflected in her illustrated
letters to Jane Carrington and Edward Bawden; those to Charles Mahoney – who she
addressed variously as Dear Chas’, Dear Matey Cock’ or My dear old potting shed’
– stand out particularly. By the late 1930s this natural gaiety and joie de vivre gave
way to a less light-hearted mood as the disparity between her Christian Science
upbringing and Mahoney’s atheistic socialism increasingly drove a wedge between
them. Apart from the rift with Mahoney this mood of greater seriousness chimed with that of the country as a whole as the clouds of impending war grew ever darker. Her Shell
poster designs (CAT 82-84) probably date from this time and it is probable that Barnett
Freedman encouraged her to produce some possible ideas as, in the late 1930s, he was
commissioned by his friend Jack Beddington, who ran the Shell publicity department,
to create puzzle’ advertisements for use in various technical journals. Dunbar may
have thought that with their simple kitchen imagery of shelling peas combined with semihumourous captions ‚Äì I Shell’, Thou Shellest’ ‚Äì they might appeal to various ladies’
journals. (see Ruth Artmonsky, Jack Beddington, The Footnote Man, London, 2006, p.54). It is not surprising that they were not developed further, but they were the precursors
to Dunbar’s Mother Hubbard (CAT 81) commissioned by I C I, and used for publication
in a variety of different publications in much the same manner as Beddington’s puzzle’
advertisements.
Scrapbooks and artists’ Christmas cards were a particular feature of the interwar period
and beyond. Edward Bawden’s and Eric Ravilious’s scrapbooks in the collection of the
Fry Gallery, Saffron Walden, contain many examples of cards from John Piper, Graham
Sutherland, Geoffrey Rhoades and other artist friends, including Dunbar and Mahoney.
After her marriage to Roger Folley Evelyn continued to produce her annual card usually
accompanied by some verse by her husband: that for Christmas 1947 – one of the
bleakest of postwar winters – depicts a particularly jolly figure of Pomona, the Roman
goddess of fruit trees, gardens and orchards (FIG 23), reminding us once again of
Evelyn’s delight in animating the spirits of the months and seasons, virtues and ancient
gods. Christian Science could not erase these pagan deities from her pantheon.”
Peyton Skipwith
Disclaimer:
Liss Llewellyn are continually seeking to improve the quality of the information on their website. We actively undertake to post new and more accurate information on our stable of artists. We openly acknowledge the use of information from other sites including Wikipedia, artbiogs.co.uk and Tate.org and other public domains. We are grateful for the use of this information and we openly invite any comments on how to improve the accuracy of what we have posted.

THE ARTIST

Evelyn Dunbar
Evelyn
Dunbar
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 (1906 - 1960)
Industry and Sloth, c.1932
Sold
Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
Clara Cowling gardening, circa 1928
Sold
Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
Felbridge, circa 1926
Sold
Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
Waternymphomania, circa 1928
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Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
RCA Sketch Club Summer Camp, 1930
Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
A diagrammatic explanation of trenching or double digging
£1,750.00
Sold
Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
August, 1937
Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
Studies of vignettes for Country Life, 1938
£3,800.00
Private
Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
Joseph’s Dream, 1938
Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
The Garden at the Elms
£3,500.00
Forthcoming
Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
December for the Country Life 1938 Gardeners Diary
Sold
Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
Design for June for the Country Life 1938 Gardeners Diary
Forthcoming
Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
Design for unused title page of Gardener’s Choice, circa 1936
Sold
Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
Study of a figure gardening possibly for Gardener’s Diary
Reserved
Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
Woman Selling Watermelon Slices, West Indies
Forthcoming
Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
Joseph in Prison, 1949-50
Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
Study for July, Gardeners Diary 1938, 1937
£1,850.00
Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
Study II for designs for an embroidered quilt [HMO 689]
£2,500.00
Private
Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
Self-portrait, [HMO 766], 1958
Sold
Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
Pussy Cat, Pussy Cat, Where Have You Been [HMO 333]
Forthcoming
Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
Study I for designs for an embroidered quilt [HMO 689]
Forthcoming
Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
Three sketchbooks
Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
Studies for Mercatora, an allegorical painting (whereabouts unknown) [HMO 173]
£2,500.00
Private
Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
Dorset, 1947-1948
Private
Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
Jacobs Dream, 1960
Private
Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
Men Stooking and Girls Learning to Stook. 1940
Private
Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
Study at Sparsholt Farm Institute for A Land Girl and the Bail Bull, 1944 [HMO 40]
Private
Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
Singling Turnips, 1943
Private
Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
Seven Days
Private
Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
April,1937
Sold
Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
The Woodcutter and the Bees, spring 1933 [HMO 309]
Private
Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
Sacking Potatoes, 1948
Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
Colour study for sub-gallery spandrels at Brockley County School for Boys [HMO 551]
£2,350.00
Sold
Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
The Dunbar family in the Garden at The Cedars, Spring (Version 1), c.1928 (HMO 75)
Forthcoming
Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
Portrait of the artists mother, Florence, on a bentwood rocking chair, c.1930 [HMO 797]
Forthcoming
Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
Go Shell, proposed design for Shell petrol. c.1937 [HMO 751]
Forthcoming
Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
Land Workers at Strood, c. 1938 [HMO 762]
Forthcoming
Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
The Childrens Shop: mice (recto), birds (verso) [HMO 749]
Sold
Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
Sleeping Beauty, 10 minute sketch, c.1928 (HMO 786)
Forthcoming
Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
Milking Practice with Artificial Udders, 1940
Sold
Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
Autumn and the Poet, 1948-1960
Evelyn Dunbar (1906 - 1960)
Portrait of the artist Margaret Goodwin
£2,950.00