Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: Attitudes to drawing in Britain, 1918-1964
Author: Aspinall, Kate
Awarding Body: University of East Anglia
Current Institution: University of East Anglia
Date of Award: 2013
Availability of Full Text:
Access from EThOS:
Access from Institution:
Numerous artists and theorists in Britain between 1918 and 1964 produced rich bodies of drawing-orientated work, yet these endeavours receive little analysis. In order to account for them as more than isolated anomalies, the nature and importance of drawing during the period needs to be reconsidered – not only within private practices, but also as a concept in the wider cultural field. When engaging with a medium that does not have a fixed identity, and so does not remain stable within a historical narrative, it is not enough to write figures back into history; it is necessary to excavate a history for figures to be written back into. The history of early-twentieth-century Britain must include the full spectrum of significant permutations of the concept of drawing, and this thesis takes steps toward uncovering these permutations and analysing their development in relation to each other. The four chapters, approximately one from each decade, explore key concerns in the evolving significance of drawing. The introduction provides a theoretical foundation for the approach, historical evidence for the period’s importance, and a methodology for treating drawing as a concept. The first chapter explores how Roger Fry and D. S. MacColl’s 1918- 1919 debate in the Burlington Magazine for Connoisseurs introduced a theoretical conflict between modernism and drawing. The second chapter examines how reading for design in paintings led to increased awareness of drawings as material traces within other art-objects, notably watercolours. The third chapter explores the importance of the sketch aesthetic during the Second World War for conditioning a form of drawing literacy. The final chapter evaluates notions of objectivity in relation to William Coldstream’s post-war experiments. These episodes combine to foreground the importance of understanding drawing’s difficult relationship with modernism and to demonstrate how it underlies drawing’s recent revival in current practice and theory.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available