Beryl Bainbridge is known as one of the finest novelists of our time but few people know that painting and drawing were also lifelong passions, which she found relaxing and althogether less pressurized than writting. They were also a source of income in the days before her writting career took off.
She painted landscapes, scenes from her novels, and above all people - friends, lovers, her children, and fictional and historical characters (she had a particular fascination for Napoleon). From her youth in Formby and Liverpool through her decades in London, art, life and writting intersect.
Wholly undettered by her lack of formal training, Beryl had an exuberance of technique to match her imagination. She would often incorporate everyday materials such as paper doilies, newspaper or cut-out photographs. As one of her many friends observes, the paintings were like Beryl herself: 'irreverent, funny and highly original.'
The author Psiche Hughes first met Beryl in summer 1963, when they were neighbours in north London. Psiche became a confidante to Beryl in both her personal and her artistic life, and their close friendship endured until Beryl's death in 2010.
Format: 208 pages, hardback
Publisher: Thames and Hudson
Dimensions: 238 x 160mm