Object Description

Ithell Colquhoun (1906-1988)
Hyacinth and Cyclamen
Signed and dated ’34
Watercolour and pencil

Object History

Marika Hanbury Tenison

Object Literature

Margaret Ithell Colquhoun was born in British India, the daughter of Henry Colquhoun, an assistant to the ambassador in Manipur, and his wife Georgia. She was educated in Rodwell, Dorset before attending Cheltenham Ladies’ College. She studied for a period at the Slade School of Art before travelling to Greece and France in 1931. In Paris she discovered the work of Andre Breton, Salvador Dali and the Surrealist and the psychomorphological works of Roberto Matta and Onslow Ford and she joined the left wing Artists’ International Association. By 1939 she had returned to London and joined the English Surrealist Group. In June of that year she and Roland Penrose held a joint exhibition at Mayor Gallery. In 1940 she was expelled from the group because of her interest in the occult and her membership of the Druidic Order and the Order of Stella Matutina. She divided her time between London and her studio near Penzance, Cornwall. She exhibited at the Fine Art Society, Mayor Gallery and elsewhere. Cheltenham and Bradford Art Galleries hold examples of her work.

Object Classification

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