John Cecil Stephenson:
Silk screen print by Kathleen Guthrie from a painting by Cecil Stephenson 1938
Framed (ref: 3186)
Signed and titled
Silkscreen and crayon, 11 7/8 x 9 7/8 in. (30 x 25 cm.) (image size)
Silk screen print by Kathleen Guthrie from a painting by Cecil Stephenson 1938, (same size). Original painting bought by Anthony D'Offay
Provenance: the Artist's family
Literature: A Poet's Eye, The Paintings of Kathlenen Guthrie, Jonathan Eastaway, Cartmel Press, 1999, p. 43
Issue in an edition of 14
Guthrie was one of the most gifted silk screen print makers of her generation. In what might be seen as a posthumous collaboration, either shortly before or after the death of her husband Cecil Stephenson, she reproduced, as silk screens, three of Stephensons iconic Abstracts from 1936, 1937 and 1938. Inspired by this experiment Guthrie embarked, in the late 1960's, on her Camelot prints, a series of bold hard edged abstract designs with pure fields of colour, often using daring combinations.
Stephenson made his first abstract paintings around 1932. In 1934 he exhibited with the 7 & 5 Society, along with Ben and Winifred Nicholson, Ivon Hitchens, Henry Moore, Barbara Hepworth and John Piper. Though not today as well known as many of his contemporaries he was one of the key figures in the development of abstract art in Britain. Indeed Herbert Reed noted that Stephenson 'was one of the earliest artists in this country to develop a completely abstract style' and credited him with being the father figure of the 'gentle nest of artists' (Ben and Winifred Nicholson, Barbara Hepworth and Henry Moore) who occupied the Mall Studio's in Hampstead. At the beginning of WW2 Calder and Mondrian counted amongst his friends and were frequent visitors to The Mall Studios.