Collage - Journal 1932...

Collage - Journal 1932...

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Dora Carrington - Painter

Self Portrait - 1910

Dora de Houghton Carrington (1893 – 1932) - Painter associated with the Bloomsbury Group.  We know that The Bloomsbury Group had a strong influence on both art and society. 

 The question is do we consider Carrington's work to be of importance? or do we consider just her Bohemian lifestyle to be of interest?

She studied at Slade School of Fine Art in London.  She married in 1921 and lived with her husband Ralph Partridge and Lytton Strachey. Partridge was educated at Christ Church and had rowed with Doras brother Noel while at Oxford. Dora was later introduced to him in Scotland.

"Partridge was the opposite of the kind of man who normally attracted her. He was tall and broad-shouldered and, in spite of her critical assessment of his looks, very handsome. He was in many ways a man's man, who wore his uniform as if he was meant to and was an athlete. Her friends in Bloomsbury took to calling him the major, and wondered how to assimilate such a seemingly stereotypical and masculine member of the English upper middle classes into their circle. They were to find that he fitted in rather well." 

She met Lytton Strachey (British writer) (which who she would have a platonic relationship) while staying at Asheham House with Virginia Woolf.  He studied at Trinity College and later joined other Cambridge graduates in the Bloomsbury group.  Carrington was devoted  to him for the rest of his life.

Virginia Woolf 1922 - Photo by G.C. Beresford

Lytton Strachey (one of the Cambridge Apostles) - Painting By Dora Carrington

The author of  the book Virginia Woolf's Women (2002) stated that he was: "Attracted to Carrington from the moment he first laid eyes on her, he had boldly tried to kiss her during a walk across the South Downs, the feeling of his beard prompting an enraged outburst of disgust from the unwilling recipient. According to legend, Carrington plotted frenzied revenge, creeping into Lytton's bedroom during the night with the intention of cutting off the detested beard. Instead, she was mesmerized by his eyes, which opened suddenly and regarded her intently. From that moment on, the two became virtually inseparable.

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