Edward Wadsworth

English , 1889 - 1949

Edward Wadsworth was born in 1889 in Clekheaton, Yorkshire. Wadsworth was a draughtsman, muralist, wood engraver and painter of marines, marine still- life, landscapes and abstracts in tempera. He studied machine draughtsmanship in Munich and from 1909 to 1912 he attended Bradford Art School and the Slade School of Art where his contemporaries included Gertler, Allinson and Nevinson. From 1921 he made regular visits to France and in 1923 he traveled to Italy.

Wadsworth exhibited with the New English Art Club in 1911 and became a member in 1921. In 1913 he joined the Omega Workshops and his work appeared in the second Post- Impressionist Exhibition. When Wyndham Lewis broke from the Omega Workshops, Wadsworth followed him and subsequently, showed in the Post- Impressionist and Futurist Exhibition at Dore Galleries. In 1914 he joined the Rebel Art Centre, signed the Vorticist manifesto, exhibited with the Allied Artists Association and was a founding member of the London Group. In 1915, Wadsworth exhibited with the Vorticists and in 1919 he had his first solo exhibition of drawings and woodcuts at the Adelphi Gallery. In 1920 he exhibited with Group X and in 1932 he became a member of Abstraction- Creation.

From 1917 to 1918 Wadsworth worked on dazzling camouflage for battleships. His early paintings were structured and cubist, influenced by Cezanne, while his Vorticist work often used woodcuts to express an intricate and angular imagery. After the war he turned to more representational work in tempera, including north country landscapes, harbor scenes and marine still-life, which reflected the influence of de Chirico and Picasso in the surrealistic atmosphere. In the latter years of his life, Wadsworth pursued a more representational style, apart from a time in the late 1930s when he was associated with Unit One. His work moved through periods of abstraction and representation but was always concerned with clarity and structure.
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