British painter and theatre designer, born in London. He studied at the Byam *Shaw School, London, 1921–3, the *Royal Academy Schools briefly in 1924, the *Slade School, 1924–6, and in Paris under Jean *Marchand, 1926–7. In the 1930s he worked with the left-wing Group Theatre, designing sets and costumes for plays by W. H. Auden (who was Medley's lover for a time), T. S. Eliot, Christopher Isherwood, and Louis MacNeice. During this period he became interested in *Surrealism and his work was included in the London International Surrealist Exhibition in 1936. In the Second World War he worked mainly on camouflage in the Middle East. Before and after the war he taught at Chelsea School of Art, then in 1951–8 taught stage design at the Slade School.

Text source: A Dictionary of Modern and Contemporary Art (Oxford University Press)

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