Edward Bawden Scrapbooks
Artist(s): Edward Bawden
Author(s): Peyton Skipwith & Brian Webb
Year published: June 2016
Publisher: Lund Humphries
Total Pages: 208
Illustrations: 260 colour illustrations
Painter and illustrator Edward Bawden’s five scrapbooks, assembled over a period of more than 55 years, contain everything from stamps, photographs, cigarette cards, Christmas cards and letters to newspaper cuttings, drawings and autographs, amongst other fascinating ephemera. Beautifully designed and illustrated with over 250 images taken from these books, Edward Bawden Scrapbooks reveals this wonderful and at times eccentric collection and provides a new insight into one of the most popular artists of 20th-century Britain.
The pages illustrated provide an alternative window into Bawden’s world, showing his very conscious awareness of both Surrealism and the work of other contemporary designers and typographers. But it is not only aficionados of Bawden who will be beguiled by these scrapbooks: perusing them is like trawling through an almanac of art, design and literature of the inter- and post-war years and the work of other key artists of the era such as Ben Nicholson, David Jones, Evelyn Dunbar, Eric Ravilious and Hugh Casson also appears. Some pages are beautiful, some instructive and others simply baffling but when taken in conjunction with Bawden’s watercolours, prints, illustrations, murals and other designs, the scrapbooks are the closest thing we have to an autobiography of one of the 20th-century’s most reclusive and English of artists.