The Exhibition Catalogues of Austin O. Spare
edited by Robert Ansell
During the course of his creative life Spare produced more than 2000 drawings, watercolours and pastels. His exhibitions ranged from the fashionable West End of Edwardian London, to the earthy characterful taverns of post-War Southwark. This volume gathers together his very rare exhibition catalogues: from his first show at the Bruton Galleries in 1907, to his last at the Archer Gallery in 1955. These facsimiles present a wealth of scarce information, including:
1. Commentaries by Austin Spare.
2. Essays from Kenneth Grant, Dennis Bardens, Grace E. Rogers, John Smith, Oswell Blakeston, G.S. Sandilands and others.
3. Lists of pictures exhibited, each with a catalogue number, often with prices.
4. Dates and locations for his shows.
These facsimiles are illustrated with more than eighty pages of colour plates, carefully selected to represent the evolution of Spare’s work between 1902-1956, and his various styles throughout the period.
The original catalogues are also augmented with an introduction by Robert Ansell and several useful appendices, including:
1. Signatures and Monograms of the artist, 1902-1956
2. Notes on Framing by Austin O. Spare (1947)
3. Inventory of Pictures at 5 Wynne Road, 1956
4. Decorated Objects
5. Exhibition Invitation Cards
6. Hand out for the Guinea Exhibition (1932)
There is also a comprehensive index, which lists alphabetically nearly 2000 picture titles for Spare’s output 1907-1955, denoting exhibition, date and catalogue number.
This substantial volume represents an invaluable and essential resource for collectors of his work.