ALLEN (Mary Hope, 1898-2001, Pioneer BBC Writer & Producer)

Signed Pencil Drawing of a Male Model, made as a student at the Slade School of Art, in the top right hand corner below her signature she has written "For permission to paint", to which Henry TONKS (1862-1937, London Slade Professor, 1918-1930) has added "a little more drawing" with his signature, on the verso and on a second sheet are related trials, with on the fourth side a fine drawing of a female head and neck in profile, hair gathered behind at the neck, apparently in another hand, it is possibly of Mary herself, together 4 sides 15" x 10", [Slade School, University College, London], no date, circa a little worn at edges with many pin marks in the corners, a modern hand has written by the portrait head on Side 4, "Slade ? by whom? of whom?" barely touching the image

Henry Tonks, F.R.C.S. had been house surgeon to Sir Frederick Treves and demonstrator in anatomy at the London Hospital medical school. As a painter he began exhibiting in 1891 and, with Wilson Steer, became associate professor at the Slade soon after. Some students he could reduce to tears, but Mary Hope Allen, it is recorded, "only laughed". Later at the BBC she was equally prepared to stand up to Sir John Reith. The present study reflects her confident observation of anatomy - might we say that the hands (only) could use "a little more drawing"?

Item Date:  1922

Stock No:  66236      £275

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