Museum Bookstore Divine People: the Art and Life of Ambrose Mcevoy (1877-1927) exhibition catalogue

Divine People: the Art and Life of Ambrose Mcevoy (1877-1927)

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A richly illustrated book all about Ambrose McEvoy - one of the most modern and daring English society portrait painters of the early 20th century.

McEvoy's quick, confident style of painting drew the attention of many leading society figures, from Winston Churchill to Lady Diana Cooper, and in particular subjects who craved something beyond a simple 'likeness' in paint. Despite his success, when McEvoy died unexpectedly at the peak of his career in 1927, his name was soon forgotten.

Divine People is the first major written study of McEvoy's life and work and aims to firmly place this long-neglected artist back into the canon of 20th-century British art. Ambrose McEvoy (1877-1927) was a household name by 1915, with prominent socialites and debutantes vying for sittings in his Grosvenor Road studio. His patrons - typically young, well-known beauties - were dazzled not only by his remarkable ability to capture their character, but also his working methods, which one spectator described as an 'awe-inspiring sight'.

Many of McEvoy's friends and contemporaries including Augustus and Gwen John, William Rothenstein and William Orpen have become familiar names to British art enthusiasts, but McEvoy has remained on the side-lines. This is partly due to the fact that many of his most accomplished works have remained tucked away in private collections or left languishing in museum stores, however, it is also due to the absence of any reliable literature on his life and work. This publication hopes to restore him to his rightful place.

Written in the early 1970s by Erik Akers-Douglas, 3rd Viscount Chilston (1910-1986), the original manuscript - of which only one copy was produced - was lost soon after it was submitted to a publisher in 1975. After several years of legal wrangling, Chilston decided to type a second copy and it was resubmitted to his agent. Chilston died the following month and the manuscript was never published.

It was recently rediscovered by Philip Mould & Company and edited by Lawrence Hendra.

 Details
  • Author: Lawrence Hendra
  • Hardcover: 256 pages 
  • Date published: October 2019
  • Language: English
  • ISBN: 978-1911300793
  • Product Dimensions: 24.7 x 18.0 cm

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