Roger Hilton: The Figured Language of Thought

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9780500093344: Roger Hilton: The Figured Language of Thought

A major study of an influential British painter whose work is often marked by humor and eroticism.

In the history of postwar painting, Roger Hilton (1911-1975) holds a special position as one of the pioneers of British abstract art. By the early 1960s he had gained international recognition and was chosen to represent the country at the 1964 Venice Biennale. However, despite being much admired as a painter, Hilton's reputation was marred by bohemian excess and rudeness fueled by alcohol, an addiction that would eventually lead to his early death.

Hilton's distinctive style began to emerge in the 1940s, and from the mid-1950s he adopted a style that he described as "semi-figurative expressionism." Eventually, by the mid-1960s, he alternated between figurative subjects, often depicting female nudes, and purely abstract works. His interest in the nude is especially evident in drawings, and several thousand works on paper survive, ranging from early sketchbooks to individual sheets from his final years when his ability to work was restricted due to ill health. After his second marriage in 1965, Hilton moved permanently to Cornwall, with only occasional visits to London for medical treatment or to attend exhibitions such as the major retrospective held at the Serpentine Gallery in 1974.

This story of Hilton's life and career is enlivened by anecdotes recalling the vicissitudes of his personal relationships with other artists, and is supported by the personal memories of his widow, Rose. Illustrated with works from all stages in Hilton's career, the book provides a visually stunning reminder of the range of his output. 230 illustrations, 170 in color.

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About the Author:

Andrew Lambirth is the art critic for The Spectator and the author of many books, including Ken Kiff.

"About this title" may belong to another edition of this title.

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