Lindy Guinness b. 1941

Lindy Guinness (The Marchioness of Dufferin and Ava):

1959 Met Duncan Grant and worked with him at Charleston for the next ten years
1960 Byam Shaw School of Art
1961-64 Chelsea School of Art
1962-63 Summer School, Salzburg - wins Kokoschka Watercolour Scholarship
1965 Scholarship to Slade School of Art
1970 Worked under Sir William Coldstream, Jeffrey Camp and Sir Lawrence Gowing

Exhibitions:

1971 Harvane Gallery, London
1972 Hole in the Wall Gallery, Belfast
1976 Gordon Gallery, Derry

1978 Maclean Gallery, London
1981 Soloman Gallery, Dublin
1982 Gordon Gallery, Derry
1984 Hartnoll & Eyre, London

1986 Browse & Darby, London

1986 Browse & Darby, London
1995 Mushroom Watercolour Show - Coughton Galleries, Northamptonshire
1996 Across the Irish Sea - Spink Gallery, London
1998 Soloman Gallery, Dublin

2000 Browse & Darby, London
2003 Salander O'Reilly, New York; Group Exhibition, Ava Gallery
2004 Browse & Darby, London; Group Exhibition, Ava Gallery
2005 Group Exhibition, Ava Gallery
2006 Jorgensen Fine Art, Dublin
2009 Browse & Darby, London

2011 Galerie Tino Zervudachi, Paris

 

 

Lindy Guinness remembers: "I met Duncan when I was seventeen. It was one of those chance meetings that change the course of one's life. I was a dizzy, privileged, slightly lost teenager, who happened to be a guest at Firle Place, staying with the Gage family.

There was an estate party; it was Guy Fawkes celebrations and a huge bonfire was the centre of activity. Neighbours and estate employees and the guests from the 'big house' were all part of the festivity. At some stage during the evening I wandered off into the night. An odd curiosity had possessed me. I just felt I must explore. I was quite some distance from the glow of the fire. Peering into the darkness I saw, leaning against an ancient oak tree, a figure. Not until I approached him did I realise it was an old man absorbed in what he was doing. I could not make out exactly what he was up to and could not resist walking closer.

'What are you doing?' I asked. 'I'm drawing the bonfire and the people' he replied. At this point, he stopped and peered closely at me, a look that I was to get to know so well in the years to come. A gentle, intense observation, a gaze of kindness and curiosity, pleasure and amusement.

 

'And who are you?' he asked quietly.

 

'I'm staying at Firle. I'm a guest of Lord and Lady Gage. You see, I'm a debutante and will be coming out next year',

 

I babbled on. Duncan looked amused and began to draw again.

 

'Can I watch you? I've never seen an artist at work before.'

I stayed for the next hour and during that time, I became intensely excited and knew that the one thing that I wanted to be was a painter. I was fascinated and enthralled watching how Duncan was able to make sense out of what he was seeing. Before my eyes he was creating this scene. The painting that evolved from this drawing now hangs in Lord Gage's sitting room at Firle.

The following day I visited Charleston for the first time, a place that was to become my spiritual home. I still feel that way about it. Until Duncan's death in 1978 I visited there regularly, and it was in the studio that I learned the love of painting. Duncan talked, laughed, loved, like he painted; there was no division between his passion for life and his passion for painting. There was something about Charleston that affected anyone who lived there, an atmosphere of commitment and a belief in its way of life. The studio was the hub and it was there, with the doors opening onto the garden, that I had the most memorable and richly creative days. Duncan and I would paint there. He would often paint me painting, and I would catch him during his afternoon nap. We talked and drew, went to see Quentin and Olivier Bell when they came to live nearby (Clive Bell was still living at Charleston when I first visited the house) and had dinner with Lydia Lopokova Keynes, as well as Cyril and Deirdre Connolly. We travelled together to Spain and France, and Duncan visited me later at Clandeboye, when I had married. My whole development as a person and an artist is entwined with Duncan. He was fifty years older than I, but he is still the soul that I feel nearest to on earth."