Dorothy Brett, 1883 - 1977


Dorothy Brett 1883 - 1977


Stylised figure composition in outdoor park setting. Group of figures in foreground, comprising bearded man to right beneath ivory coloured umbrella, limply holding a book in his right hand; woman in pale pink dress and yellow hat in centre beneath green umbrella, seated in deckchair facing young man in grey suit crouching to left. More figures in background beneath coloured umbrellas to left and right. They are the artist's 'Bloomsbury set' friends, and have been identified as follows: front, left to right: Julien Morrell, Aldous Huxley, Dorothy Brett herself, Ottoline Morrell, Lytton Strachey, John Middleton Murry and Katherine Mansfield in the background

Display Label

Gallery text panel Tradition and Experiment Early Twentieth-Century Art 1900 - 1939. In Britain, the beginning of the 20th century coincided with the end of the Victorian age. Artists and designers experimented, challenging traditional ways of seeing and making; now trying to create a new art for a modern era. In painting, it was often traditional subject matter such as portraits, landscapes and interiors that would be tackled in new ways. The bustle and the brutality of urban life was an inspiration or something to escape from. Boundaries became increasingly blurred between design and decoration, painting and making and individual expression replaced academic authority. Art was made to be affordable and at a scale that would fit into ordinary homes. Some called the celebration of the modern into question after the horrors of the First World War. Traditional imagery was simplified or became childlike and slowly broke down into fragmented visions. Dream and chance tapped into subconscious anxieties and in 1939, world war intervened once again.

Object Name


Creators Name

Dorothy Brett

Date Created



framed: 139.5cm x 140.4cm

accession number


Place of creation





oil paint


Presented by the Contemporary Art Society, 1996


© Estate of the artist

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