Ivon Hitchens (1893-1979) is widely regarded as the outstanding English landscape painter of the 20th century. Immediately recognisable by its daring yet subtle use of colour and brushmark to evoke the spirit of place, his work is to be found in public and private collections throughout the world.
Newly available in paperback, this is the definitive study of Hitchens' life and work. Peter Khoroche draws on the painter's published writings, correspondence and conversation to create a critical reappraisal of Hitchens' theory and practice. He surveys the entire oeuvre (still-lifes, flower pieces, nudes, interiors and large-scale murals besides the landscapes), a huge legacy of work spanning sixty years, and charts the journey from conventional beginnings to 'figurative abstraction'.
A selection of over 100 colour images, examples of Hitchens' best and most characteristic painting in all genres, provide a retrospective exhibition covering the artist's entire career. These illustrations, singled out for praise by reviewers of the hardback edition, demonstrate the artist's outstanding talents and reinforce his standing as a key figure in the history of British art.
Peter Khoroche wrote the catalogue for an exhibition of Hitchens' paintings (Serpentine Gallery, London and tour 1989/90) and for an exhibition of Ben Nicholson's drawings and painted reliefs (Kettle's Yard, Cambridge and tour 2002/3). He is also the author of Ben Nicholson: Drawings and Painted Reliefs (Lund Humphries, 2002).
Contents: Preface; Note to New Edition; 1893-1919: Parents - Childhood - Schooldays - Travel - Royal Academy Schools; 1919-25: Hampstead studio - Church decorations - Downland - Theories of Dow & Bell - Seven and Five Society - Chantemesle - Ben & Winifred Nicholson; 1925-33: First one-man exhibition - Sussex & Shropshire - Moatlands - London Artists' Association; 1933-40: Hampstead in the 1930s - 'Objective Abstractions': the end of the 7&5 - Marriage - Suffolk; 1940s: Greenleaves - Painting theory - 'Painting is painting' - First retrospective - Isolation in the country - Howard Bliss - The Sheffield Incident; 1950s: Nudes - Large-scale works - Development in landscapes; 1960-65: Motifs - A painting day - Paint, brushes, canvas, palette - Uncertain health & weather - Recognition - Second Retrospective; 1965-79: Seachange - Greenleaves - Music & Painting - Consummation; Notes; Appendix; Chronology; Exhibitions; Public collections; Select bibliography; Index.