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Randolph Schwabe (1885 - 1948)

Birdie Sewing



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Birdie Sewing

Signed l.l.: R Schwabe Pencil Framed

28 by 38.5 cm., 11 by 15 in. (frame size 48 by 58 cm., 19 by 22 in.)

The present work shows Birdie, the artist’s wife. It would have been drawn shortly after they were married in 1913. Randolph Schwabe was born in Eccles, Manchester, the son of a German born cotton merchant. He initially studied at the Royal College of Art but after a short time transferred to the Slade. In 1904 he won the Slade Scholarship and in 1905 won the college Summer Competition. In 1906, a Slade scholarship allowed hi to study at the Academie Julian, Paris before travelling to Italy. Unable to enlist due to poor health he was an official War Artist during World War I. After the war he initially worked as a theatrical designer and book illustrator he began teaching at Camberwell and Westminster Schools of Art. He was then drawing master at the Royal College of Art before succeeding Henry Tonks as Slade Professor and head of the Slade School of Art in 1930. In 1941 he jointed the committee of the War Artists’ Advisory Committee. A prolific exhibitor at the New English Art Club and Goupil Gallery, also showing at Carfax Gallery, Fine Art Society, Leicester Galleries and Royal Watercolour Society. Examples of his work are in the collections of the Tate Gallery, Imperial War Museum and elsewhere.