Ravilious’ stunning yet deceptively simple watercolours, along with images of everyday life by other artists working on the Home Front, provide a fascinating picture of Britain in the 1930s and 40s.
Eric Ravilious has been described as the greatest English watercolourist of the twentieth century and his images of the landscape and of everyday objects attract passionate devotees. He was an artist who combined a love of the landscape with a fascination for different types of transport – from trains, old cars and gypsy caravans to the aircraft and destroyers he depicted as an Official War Artist in his precise, dry watercolours. Despite his short life, (he was killed, aged 39, in 1942) he was a prolific painter, printmaker and designer and his work reflects a deep delight in the world in which he lived. This lecture considers Ravilious alongside other artists working on the Home Front – and shows their remarkably powerful images of Britain at war.