Roland Penrose: The Life of a Surrealist

ISBN: 9781474414500
Artist(s): Roland Penrose
Author(s): James King
Format: hardback
Year published: 2016
Publisher: Edinburgh University Press
Total Pages: 352

Artist(s) Biographies:


As an artist, an impresario, a biographer and a collector, Roland Penrose (1900-1984) is a key figure in the study of art in England from 1920 to 1984. In the first biography of Penrose, acclaimed biographer James King explores the intricacies of Penrose’s life and work tracing the profound effects of his upbringing in a Quaker household on his values, the early influence of Roger Fry, his friendships with Max Ernst, Andre Breton and other surrealists, especially Paul Eluard, his organization of the landmark International Surrealist Exhibition in the summer of 1936, his conflicted relationship with Pablo Picasso, and his tireless promotion of surrealism as well as the production of his own surrealist art. With a deftness of touch, King traces Penrose’s complex professional and personal lives, including his pacifism, his work as a biographer – including his outstanding life of Picasso as well as those of Miro, Man Ray, and Tapies – and as an art historian, as well as his unconventionality, especially in his two marriages including that to Lee Miller – and his numerous love affairs.

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