Rebecca Birrell – This Dark Country: Women Artists, Still Life and Intimacy in the Early Twentieth Century

Sunday 11th September, 3pm

Rebecca Birrell – This Dark Country: Women Artists, Still Life and Intimacy in the Early Twentieth Century

Lemons gleam in a bowl. Flowers fan out softly in a vase. A door swings open in a sparsely furnished room. What is contained in a still life – and what falls out of the frame?

For women artists in the early twentieth century, including Ethel Sands, Nina Hamnett, Vanessa Bell and Gwen John, who lived in and around the Bloomsbury Group, this art form was a conduit for their lives, their rebellions, their quiet loves. Dora Carrington, a Slade School graduate, recorded eggs on a table at Tidmarsh Mill, where she built a richly fulfilling if delicate life with Lytton Strachey.

But for every artist we remember, there are those we have forgotten; who leave only elusive traces; whose art was replaced by being a mother or wife; whose remaining artworks lie dusty in archives or attics.

Rebecca will be in conversation with author and critic Alice Jolly.