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In this week's blog Assistant Curator, Victoria Howarth, peers inside our Book of the Month, Alexandra Harris' Romantic Moderns.

Romantic Moderns: English Writers, Artists and the Imagination from Virginia Woolf to John Piper
RRP: £19.95 (10% off for Jerwood Gallery Members)

Romantic Moderns by Alexandra Harris is a beautifully presented account of British culture between 1910 and the Second World War. John Piper and Virginia Woolf are central figures in this book which covers a huge amount of ground from art, garden design, architecture and music to travel guides and cookery. Brimming with details of the era, Harris’s debut takes a fresh, eclectic approach to a fascinating period of cultural history.

The chapters in this book have wide-ranging and enticing titles, such as ‘Dreaming of Manderlay’, ‘A Break for Refreshments’ and ‘Variations on a View’, introducing Harris’ wide-ranging, thematic approach. There are over sixty beautiful reproductions accompanying Harris’ evocative text throughout the book. Romantic Moderns won the Guardian first book award in 2010, and has received wide critical acclaim.

A number of the artists discussed in this book are featured in the current collection hang at the gallery. Ivon Hitchens’ painting A Shropshire Landscape is currently hanging in gallery Room 3. Stanley Spancer’s painting of his niece Daphne Spencer with a Green Scarf is on display in Room 4. There are works by Frank Dobson and Henry Moore in Room 5, and John Piper’s The Churchyard is on display in Room 6. Edward Bawden’s linocut Brighton Pier is currently hanging in Room 7.

Jerwood Gallery shop is open whenever the gallery is open and don’t forget, you can visit the shop anytime for free, without visiting the gallery.


Image: Ivon Hitchens, A Shropshire Landscape, c.1931 © Jonathan Clark Fine Art, Representatives of the Estate of the Artist

17 September, 2014
Written by Victoria Howarth