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Ravilious: The Watercolours

I.B.Tauris presents the definitive guide to the luminous, evocative and timeless watercolours of Eric Ravilious (1903-42), an artist now regarded as one of the finest of the twentieth century.

Eric Ravilious, The Westbury Horse 
Ravilious: The Watercolours  is the first full-length critical study to focus on the watercolours of this multi-talented British artist and designer. Adopting the wide-ranging approach familiar to readers of his previous books on the artist, author James Russell explores the evolution of a remarkable talent.

Ravilious' astonishingly prolific career spanned peace and war. With the outbreak of World War II he was assigned to the Royal Navy as one of the first Official War Artists finding new ways to capture and preserve the fleeting record of passing time.

Including the most comprehensive display of Ravilious watercolours yet assembled – some have never been published – many are explored in short accompanying essays, some with full-bleed images that show details of paintings at full size, looking at composition, technique, influence and inspiration, as well as discussing the significance of particular subjects and the people behind the scenes.

Ravilious: The Watercolours , published in paperback on 31 March, is accompanied by the exhibition 'Ravilious' at Dulwich Picture Gallery, 1st April to 31st August, curated by James Russell.


Eric Ravilious, Dangerous Work at Low Tide
Eric Ravilious, Dangerous Work at Low Tide, 1940, Watercolour and
pencil on paper, Image courtesy of Ministry of Defence, Crown
Copyright 2015


Eric Ravilious, Greenhouse, Cyclamen and Tomatoes
Eric Ravilious, Greenhouse, Cyclamen and Tomatoes, 1935,
Watercolour and graphite on paper, ©Tate, London 2015


Eric Ravilious, Train Landscape
Eric Ravilious, Train Landscape, 1940, Watercolour and pencil on
paper, Aberdeen Art Gallery & Museums Collections


Eric Ravilious, Tea at Furlongs
Eric Ravilious, Tea at Furlongs, 1939, Watercolour and
pencil on paper, The Fry Art Gallery

Eric Ravilious, The Waterwheel
Eric Ravilious, The Waterwheel, 1938, Watercolour and pencil on
paper, Brecknock Museum, with support from the Art Fund; the V&A
Purchase Fund; Brecknock Art Trust; Brecknock Society; Usk
Valley Trust


James Russell studied History at Pembroke College, Cambridge, but was galvanized into writing about art by a lengthy stint selling contemporary paintings and sculpture in Santa Fe, New Mexico. A passionate advocate of twentieth-century British painting and design, he writes and lectures widely. His books include the popular four-volume series Ravilious in Pictures, as well as titles devoted to Edward Seago, Peggy Angus and Paul Nash.


Top image: Eric Ravilious, The Westbury Horse, 1939, Watercolour
and pencil on paper, Private Collection

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