(Born Tenby, Pembrokeshire, 4 January 1878; died Fryern Court, nr. Fordingbridge, Hampshire, 31 October 1961). British painter and draughtsman. He studied at the Slade School, 1894–8. In his early days there ‘he appeared a neat, timid, unremarkable personality’ (DNB), but after injuring his head diving into the sea while on holiday in Pembrokeshire in 1897 he became a dramatically changed figure, described by Wyndham Lewis as ‘a great man of action into whose hands the fairies had placed a paintbrush instead of a sword’. He grew a beard and became the very image of the unpredictable bohemian artist. His work, too, changed dramatically: previously it had been described by Tonks as ‘methodical’, but it became lively and spontaneous, especially in his brilliant drawings—his draughtsmanship was already legendary by the time he left the Slade.

Text source: The Oxford Dictionary of Art and Artists (Oxford University Press)

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