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sabato 23 luglio 2016

Anthony Earnshaw (9 October 1924 – 17 August 2001) English anarchist, artist, author and illustrator.

Anthony Earnshaw

Anthony Earnshaw (9 October 1924 – 17 August 2001) was an English anarchist, artist, author and illustrator.
Earnshaw was born in Ilkley, West Yorkshire. His father, a watchmaker and jeweller, died before he was born. His mother ran the family shop until it went bankrupt in 1930, when they moved first to Redcar and then to Leeds. Earnshaw attended Harehills School in Leeds until the age of 14.
He worked as an engineering fitter, and later as a lathe turner and a crane driver, while educating himself at Leeds City Library. At 20 he became interested in Surrealism and, with his lifelong friend Eric Thacker, devised surreal activities such as boarding and alighting from trains at random. In the early 1960s he met several other like-minded people, including Patrick Hughes, Ian Breakwell and Glen Baxter. Hughes persuaded Earnshaw to hold a retrospective at the Leeds Institute in 1966, which was followed by an exhibition in Exeter, The Enchanted Domain, to which he was invited by John Lyle.
He began teaching part-time, first at the Harrogate School of Art, then at Bradford Art School, before leaving engineering altogether in 1972 to take up a fellowship at Leeds Polytechnic. He left teaching in 1985 to concentrate on art.
In 1968 Earnshaw collaborated with Thacker on an illustrated novel, Musrum, which was not commercially successful, but has become a cult classic. The book is a fantasy, peppered with aphorisms ("Sudden prayers make God jump"), and tells the story of the title character's kingdom and of his battle with the nefarious Weedking. It was followed in 1971 by a sequel, Wintersol, about the secret criminal nature of Father Christmas. Both books were praised for their elegant writing, wit and wordplay, and especially for their sheer invention.
Later publications included a cartoon in the Times Educational Supplement, a wheeled bird named Wokker, and books of aphorisms, the largest being Flick Knives and Forks in 1982. In the 1980s and 1990s Earnshaw began making art boxes, further exemplifying his loyalty to Surrealism.
Earnshaw died in 2001. He was survived by his second wife, Gail, and by two daughters from his first marriage.

anthony earnshaw - seven secret alphabets - mnop


Anthony Earnshaw (October 9, 1924 – August 17, 2001)
Born Ilkley, W. Yorks, 1924, the year Lenin died and Breton published his first Manifesto. At the age of 20, through an interest in poetry and literature, he discovered Surrealism."It changed my life. Since then I have drawn drawings and a cartoon strip, painted pictures, written books of a sort, printed prints, made assemblages in boxes and all in all made a general nuisance of myself." 
AUTOGRAPHICAL SKETCH "An interest in poetry in the 1940's led to a discovery of Surrealism. This was a milestone for it made me want to paint pictures which around 1944, 1945, I began to try my hand at. A little later, in greedy quest for more Surrealism I made rare trips to London to visit the London Gallery which was run by the poet E.L.T. Mesens. I never met Mesens, he was ever away in Paris or Brussels. I do recall seeing George Melly, then the Gallery 'dogsbody'. Some fifteen years on, in the early '60's, he and I became firm friends. Surrealism for me was home. I was among friends at last, having been away in a foreign land all my life. The spell of it then cast remains a frisky imp haunting my life. Towards the end of the '60s, twenty and more years after those days. Eric Thacker and I together wrote and illustrated two off-beat novels Musrum and Wintersol. We also collaborated to produce WOKKER, a strip cartoon featuring a mercurial hero who embodies the seemingly contradictory characteristics of mischief maker and an innocent abroad, dismayed by the prospect of existence. In the 50's I worked in the machine shop at Thos. Green & Son, Engineers, North Street (long ago bankrupt).
For a period I drove the overhead gantry crane lifting castings on and off the various machines and so on. Between lifts, most drivers read the racing page. Not me. Much to the amusement of my workmates I painted what they called, 'Daft pictures'. Perforce, they had to be small - have you ever been in the cramped cabin of a crane? At that time much of my work was painted under the eye, so to speak, of Paul Klee, then as always one of my heroes. Towards the end of the 60s my activities as a painter virtually petered out. Apart from the occasional 'dabble' I haven't painted since then. From then up to the mid '70s when I began to build assemblages, I was busy with my collaboration with Eric Thacker. I composed as well, an album of alphabets, Seven Secret Alphabets, which Cape published in 1972. An illustrated collection of 'aphorisms and insults', a kind of ongoing notebook, also occupied my time. This was published with the title Flick Knives & Forks by Transformaction, Harpford, in 1981. My collection of social realist drawings, which have been described as 'bitter' were published with the title A View from Back o' Town. Now, assemblage is the thing. It seems to me 'the assemblage' is more real, therefore more powerful than 'the painting'.
Anthony Earnshaw

 The Future of Pets: Whatever Became of Rin Tin Tin? 1966 Oil on canvas 65x100cms (Gail Earnshaw)

 Pushing Knobs and Pulling Levers 1960 Watercolour on paper 75x58cms (Gail Earnshaw)

Cartrider after L.P. Hartley 1954 Watercolour on paper 74x57.5cms (Gail Earnshaw)


Anthony Earnshaw (British, 1924) 'Secret alphabet no. 5'; 'Secret alphabet no. 3', a pair

 In Memorium:Dorothy Rose Earnshaw Nee Myers:( Born 1891-Died 1963) 1992 Watecolour on paper 80.5x52cms (Gail Earnshaw)

The Citizen 1952 Watercolour on paper 40x45cms (Gail Earnshaw)

 The End of a Perfect Day 1946 Watercolour on paper 35.5x29cms (Gail Earnshaw)

One Bent Ventilator, One Severed Hand, Two Phantom Players with a length of Rope 1949 pen, ink and crayon 32.5x45.5cms (Gail Earnshaw)

 The Camp is Overwelmed by Shadows 1950 pen, ink and crayon 42x34cms (Gail Earnshaw)

The Missinging Button 1949 pen, ink and crayon 32x42cms (Gail Earnshaw)

In Aylesbury's Ancient Days (part 9/10) 1948 pen, ink and crayon 59.5x42cms (Gail Earnshaw)

Adieu and Toodle-oo 1983/86 Pen & Ink drawing 40x54.5 cms (Gail Earnshaw)

    Secret Alphabet 4, 1985 3rd edition Litho print 83 x 56cms

 Eve Savouring The Forbidden Fruit 2000 Boxed assemblage 54x41.5x10cms (Flowers Galleries , London)

Homage to andre Breton:the light will cease to fail 1989 Boxed assemblage 61x47x10cms (Flowers Galleries, London)

She's Outside the Village - 2001 Boxed Assemblage 3505x50.5x7.5

Crude map of the British Isles showing the location of the artist and some of his friends - 1979 Collage (Gail Earnshaw)

The Song of the soil 1985/1989 Boxed assemblage 43x45x6cms (Flowers Galleries, London)


  In Earnshaw's Pantry 1 1982 

Musrum. Eric Thacker & Anthony Earnshaw 1971

Nightwork: Wokker watercolour painting from 1974


I look for you in my heart, but alas
The heart I have is not my own.
My fingers run through my hair,
But they come back empty-handed.

 DESIGNER FUNERAL: Anthony Earnshaw left, and his wife Gail right. Picture: DAVE CHARNLEY

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