Diana Armfield: A Lyrical Eye

ISBN: 9781913645076
Artist(s): Diana Armfield
Format: hardback
Year published: 28 May 2021
Publisher: Paul Holberton Publishing
Publisher Location: London
Total Pages: 224
Illustrations: 200 colour illustrations

Artist(s) Biographies:


1 available

Diana Armfield RA Hon RWS NEAC has a highly personal attachment to subject and a subtly distinctive affinity with the rhythms of form and tone. These qualities make her an important, influential figure in modern British art – and a very popular one. Flower paintings have brought her wide acclaim, but this book – created to mark her 100th birthday – also richly represents Diana’s feeling for landscape and place.

Including an inspiring number of more recent works, it brings her fascinating artistic and life story up to date. ‘I think I was born making things’, Diana comments to Andrew Lambirth, whose absorbing interview with her forms the narrative thread of Diana Armfi eld: A Lyrical Eye. Diana’s was a creative childhood steeped in experiments with drawing, pottery and embroidery, played out against the backdrop of a picture-fi lled house, a lovely garden and an artistic family.

She studied at Bournemouth, Slade and Central art schools, starting out as a talented textile designer – a legacy that lent her a unique approach to the geometry, cadences and colour qualities of a painting. After organising cultural activities for workers and troops in World War II, Diana became one half of a successful partnership designing textiles and wallpaper, whose work featured in the Festival of Britain in 1951. The 1960s brought a turn to painting and from 1966 Diana has been a regular exhibitor at the prestigious Royal Academy Summer Exhibition.

She has continued to paint and draw throughout her life and, as this book clearly demonstrates, always thinks afresh about each subject she tackles in order to respond to it with a close,warm sincerity. Diana Armfi eld: A Lyrical Eye charts Diana’s personal and artistic journey with over 200 beautiful reproductions of her work, tracing favourite subjects and events – from a Welsh landscape to an informal fl ower display or the much-loved location of a painting trip in Italy or France. Andrew Lambirth’s interview also explores the unique bond with her husband, painter Bernard Dunstan, who died in 2017, looking at how two leading artists interwove their personal and creative lives over a marriage of almost 70 years.


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