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‘Sketches of Sophie'
double-sided pencil drawing - 30 x 23cms
In 1906, at the age of fifteen, Henri Gaudier, the son of a carpenter, won a traveling scholarship to London to study English.
From 1909 Gaudier lived in London in poverty with his girlfriend Sophie Brzeska, a Polish woman twenty years his senior. Gaudier adopted her surname, and lived on her savings until he found a job as a translator at London docks.
Constantly drawing, he gradually made friends in artistic circles, amongst whom were Enid Bagnold, Katherine Mansfield, John Middleton and Jacob Epstein. In 1913 he exhibited six sculptures at the Allied Artists Exhibition, the Albert Hall, where he first met Ezra Pound.
He gave up his job to devote himself ‘entirely to my art’ and worked for a time with Roger Fry in the Omega Workshops. By 1914 he was involved in the Rebel Art Centre with Wyndham Lewis where he became a founder member of the Vorticists and contributed to their magazine Blast.
In September that year, he left England to fight for France, where he was killed in June 1915. A memorial exhibition of his work was held at The Leicester Galleries in London June 1918.
When Sophie Brzeska died in 1925, Gaudier's work became the property of the state. The Tate Gallery chose to retain only three sculptures and fifteen drawings. The rest of the works were all sold to Jim Ede, who spent a lifetime promoting his art.
Cat:S277 numbered & registered at 'Kettle's Yard', Cambridge, by H. Cole, author of ‘Burning To Speak' and from the collection of H.S.Ede, author of ‘Savage Messiah’
Bibl Dictionnaire des peintres, sculpteurs, dessinateurs et graveurs by E. Benezit
|Height||30.00 cm||(11.81 inches)|
|Width||23.00 cm||(9.06 inches)|
|External Height||54.00 cm||(21.26 inches)|
|External Width||47.00 cm||(18.50 inches)|