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Laura Knight: A Life Hardcover – Illustrated, 20 Dec 2013


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Product details

  • Hardcover: 264 pages
  • Publisher: McNidder & Grace (20 Dec 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0857160494
  • ISBN-13: 978-0857160492
  • Product Dimensions: 21.8 x 14.5 x 2.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 129,161 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

More About the Author

The cultural historian Dr Barbara C. Morden specialises in art and literary history. She was born & educated in Newcastle-upon Tyne & studied at the Universities of Nottingham & Newcastle.She is well known in the North East of England, nationally & internationally for her entertaining & scholarly lectures & presentations. For several years she has worked for the Open University (UK) as an Arts Consultant & Associate Lecturer.
Best known for her best-selling book John Martin: Apocalypse Now! (2010),she is a regular contributor to the English Review & has recently given lectures & gallery tours in Newcastle, Sheffield, Nottingham & Norwich. Currently she is researching & writing a biography of the English Impressionist painter Dame Laura Knight.

Product Description

Review

Barbara Morden has come up with a gem, it stands out and stays on the mind more than any photo or painting. This biography is a book I recommend to all collectors and lovers of Laura Knight and her works. --R. John Croft, Laura Knight Trust and great nephew to the artist

The author's much-anticipated biography of Dame Laura Knight appears at a time of renewed interest in the artist. Informed, accurate, well-presented and, above all, entertaining, this is a book that will generate much pleasure. --Neil Walker, Curator, Djanogly Art Gallery, University of Nottingham

An overdue and engrossing life of one of the most popular British artists of the 20th century. --Rosie Broadley, Associate Curator, National Portrait Gallery

About the Author

Barbara C. Morden is a cultural historian, writer and lecturer in art history and literary studies. Dr Morden is well known for her informed, articulate and entertaining public lectures as well as for her publications, notably John Martin: Apocalypse Now! an illustrated biography of the 19th century painter and engraver which was published to much acclaim in 2010. With this latest book on Dame Laura Knight, Barbara has once again brought her enthusiasm and scholarship together in honour of another much-loved British artist.

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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Martyn on 10 Mar 2014
Format: Hardcover
I have finally finished reading Barbara Morden's biography of the artist Laura Knight, and admittedly, I knew very little about Laura Knight before reading this, as I came to it on the strength of Barbara's previous book on John Martin, which I cherish dearly.

As with Apocalypse Now, I was captivated from the start; it took me a long time to complete reading, and not because it was bulky - it was neatly written, and perfectly succinct, but I found that I had discovered an artist that I really had little knowledge of, only briefly recalling a couple of her paintings. I spent as much time researching Laura Knight as I did with the book, which alone shows the power this book had over me.

The tone of the book shows a true affection of this artist, and the knowledge and depth of Laura Knight emits from every page. I will definitely be recommending this.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Susie B TOP 50 REVIEWER on 19 Jun 2014
Format: Hardcover
Barbara Morden's 'Laura Knight: A Life' is the authorised biography of one of the foremost British painters of the twentieth century and spans the artist's long and productive life from her birth in 1877 until her death in 1970. Laura Knight was the youngest of three children born in Long Eaton, Derbyshire, to mother, Charlotte Bates, and father, Charlie Johnson, a lace draper and later pub landlord. Her parents' marriage ended not long after Laura's birth and money was consequently rather tight, as it remained, to varying levels, throughout Laura's formative years. This concern over making ends meet was a something that never entirely left Laura, and this worry contributed towards the artist's work ethic, which was impressive. A concern over finances, and a genuine and justified belief that her work was of worth, often led to Laura's tendency to price her paintings at a higher price than some buyers were willingly prepared to pay, which meant that certain paintings remained unsold. But Laura was right to value her work highly - her technical skills, which she learnt at art school in Nottingham and honed during her years in the artists' colonies of Staithes, in Yorkshire, and Newlyn, in Cornwall, were considerable, and her list of achievements is impressive. Laura Knight was the first woman to be elected as a Royal Academician; she was the first female artist to be made a Dame of the British Empire; she was the only woman to be given War Commissions in the two World Wars; and at the age of 68 she was commissioned as the only British artist to cover the Nuremberg Trials. Laura Knight worked on a wide range of subjects including: landscapes, portraits, ballet, theatre, circus, gypsies, racehorses, seascapes and war art.Read more ›
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By John Croft on 17 April 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A really good book if you wish to learn more about such an important artist. Better than previous biographies /books written on the artist.
Even just as a book to read, it covers an interesting period of time of someone who rose from nothing to become perhaps the most famous of all British female artists in a period when it was much harder for women as such to achieve success.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Stuart Whitaker on 22 Jan 2014
Format: Hardcover
Laura Knight: A Life by Dr Barbara Morden.
Laura Knight: A life, is a fine book produced in a style that harks back to the days before paper backs; it's cover is an image of the Artist on a hard binding that seems suitable to the era of the central character of the work. The binding's contrasted colours instantly draw attention to the book which, being only around 250 or so pages make it a comfortable size and weight for reading anywhere.
The Title is a giveaway; it is a biography of one of the foremost female Artists of the early 20th century; but being of 250 or so pages doesn't detract from the work. It is a big story that has been very well written in a clear and concise style that has been achieved, where other biographers of this Artist have failed, by the quality and depth of the research with each sentence of the book being carefully crafted to say exactly what it needs to say and know more.
The Author, Barbara Morden, has obviously put a great deal of thought and hard work into, both, the research and production of the book. It is must read for anybody interested in Biography in general and Art History in Particular.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By CB on 20 Jan 2014
Format: Hardcover
This is a fascinating biography of Dame Laura Knight, delightfully and skilfully written - and clearly rigorously researched - with a selected quote forming each chapter heading. The writing is complemented by finely-reproduced colour plates and black & white photographs spanning Dame Laura's lifetime.

The choice of textured binding, and the wood-cut self-portrait featured on the front cover, reflect the style of publications of the 1920s and `30s era - `introducing' us to Dame Laura before we open the book. A 'dust-jacket' would seem superfluous!

The book is also in a size and format that can only enhance its readability - convenient in that it is not too big or heavy to hold open or to take out in a bag - and it should be read from cover to cover!

A highly recommended read - whether already familiar with, or completely new to, the works of Dame Laura Knight.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Molly Daniel on 9 April 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A friend recommended Barbara Morden’s fascinating biography of Laura Knight: A Life and although I was completely new to Dame Laura Knight’s work, I absolutely loved this book. Barbara’s meticulous research and her writing expertise bring Laura Knight’s paintings to life: the Staithes family in their sparsely furnished room, the circus performers, clowns and animals, and the record of the WW2 Nuremberg trials which Knight painted in her late sixties, and to which Morden refers thus: ‘As if in a mirage, the Courtroom dissolves left into the tortured landscapes of a ruined and burning city.’ Barbara Morden also enriches ‘A Life’ by describing the key people and characters who were influential in the development of the many different styles in which Knight worked throughout her long hard-working life. I applaud Barbara Morden on her excellent biography.
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