Ruskin Spear

December 15 2022

Image of Ruskin Spear

Picture: NPG

There's a new book on Ruskin Spear (1911-1990), one of those British 20th Century artists who seemed to me to be unjustly overlooked. I've always like his portraits, like the one of Harold Wilson above. There's a new book out on him now, by Tanya Harrod, available here. It's reviewed in Apollo by Lynda Nead:

In recent years, 20th-century British art has been experiencing a significant revival in scholarship, curating and publishing, with outstanding exhibitions, books and catalogues that make it possible to teach and enjoy British art of this period more fully than ever before. With all this renewed attention, however, the painter Ruskin Spear (1911–90) has been overlooked. In spite of the high regard in which he was held in the 1950s, by the late ’60s his reputation was dwindling and he had fallen out of fashion. This book is a meticulous piece of art historical rescue; a bid to replace Spear in the new histories of British art.

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