Avant-garde painter, designer, decorator, inspired colourist, mother and muse, Vanessa Bell was the warm heart of the Bloomsbury Group, a set who Dorothy Parker once described as “living in squares and loving in triangles”.
Navigating the tides of sexual and artistic revolution with tolerance, irreverence and wit she had a central role in the social and aesthetic life of Bloomsbury; alive to their love affairs, romances, passions and pleasures, and refreshingly uninterested in politics. She was the sister of the writer Virginia Woolf, wife of the critic Clive Bell, and counted the painter Roger Fry and the artist Duncan Grant among her lovers.
Her Bloomsbury Group connections and their associated scandals have perhaps lessened the fame of her work - in this morning lecture art historian Julia Musgrave asks: was Vanessa Bell the painter as radical as Virginia Woolf the writer?
Morning event with coffee and pastries.
In time for the opening of the Dulwich Picture gallery retrospective:
Vanessa Bell (1879-1961) (8 February 2017 - 4 June 2017)
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