“In & Around Cookham – The Art of Stanley Spencer” – notes & resources

Art History Mornings at The Beecroft (Saturday 29th February, 10.30am)

In & Around Cookham: The Art of Stanley Spencer

Notes & Resources

Stanley Spencer was perhaps one of the most unique artists working in Britain in the early 20th century, his beloved village of Cookham augmented with biblical visions. Today we’ll discuss his remarkable work and eccentric life in the context of the post-war 1920s and the art of his peers.

Spencer, Stanley, 1891-1959; Self Portrait

Self Portrait: Stanley Spencer (1891–1959) [1923; Stanley Spencer Gallery; artuk.org]

see Stanley Spencer Gallery website

follow: @SpencerCookham on Twitter


Key online picture resources:

http://www.artuk.org – and search Stanley Spencer (nb. really useful to chance ‘sort by’ to “old to new” to get them in date order

http://www.bridgemanimages.com – often has paintings in private collections



There are some clips on BBC i-player:

https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p00j5pml (Cookham Ressurection)

https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b03yggd0/clips (WW2 Clyde paintings)

(sadly a 2 part film on Spencer and the Arena: Stanley Spencer and his Daughters are currently unavailable)


“Stanley Spencer: An English Vision” by Fiona McCarthy [Yale University Press, 1998]

“Stanley Spencer” (Exhibition Catalogue) eds. Timothy Hyman & Patrick Wright [Tate Publishing, 2001]

“Modern English Painters” (Vol. 2) by John Rothenstein [Macdonald & Co. 1984]

“Unquiet Landscape” by Christopher Neve [Thames & Hudson, 2020] (NB this will be our book for Words & Pictures in April 2020)

“Romantic Moderns” by Alexandra Harris [Thames & Hudson, 2010]

Other artists & contexts:

The ‘Neo-Primitives’ of the Slade years included: David Bomberg (1890–1957); William Patrick Roberts (1895–1980); Mark Gertler (1891–1939); John Currie (1883–1914)

Another Christian artist of the time: David Jones (1895–1974) – who lived in an artistic colony with Eric Gill for a while

Spencer’s wife Hilda Carline (1889-1950) was an artist; as were her brothers Richard Carline (1896-1980) & Sydney Carline (1888-1929)

Patricia Preece (1894-1966) appeared to be an artist, but actually her work is by Dorothy Hepworth (1898-1978)

Gilbert Spencer (1892-1979) – also an artist and there are murals by him at Balliol, Oxford.

LS Lowry (1887-1976) – an interesting exercise in ‘compare & contrast’

Please let me know of other resources you find interesting!

For further information please contact Mark Banting by email chasingtales@rocketmail.com or via twitter @TheCommonViewer


About TheCommonViewer

Independent Researcher: gently exploring "The Art & Artists of Russia (1850s-present) currently, and please see the A History of Art in England series; looking forward to discussing "British Art Groups (1930s)" when we can have live group meetings again! Twitter: @TheCommonViewer

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