Continuing the theme from our last pictures feature, my favourite lots in this month’s Paintings, Drawings and Prints Online auction are three exquisite wood engravings by Scottish artist, Annabel A Kidston (1896 – 1981).
Those who hail from St Andrews are likely to be very familiar with Kidston’s work – her passion to preserve the town’s architectural heritage did much to restore many important buildings which had been previously neglected, and she was instrumental in the founding of the St Andrew’s Preservation Trust and the St Andrews Art Club in the 1940s.
This dedication to art was fostered during her formative years at the Glasgow School of Art where she studied from 1918 to 1921, before relocating to Paris and then the Slade School of Art in London. It was here she delved into the world of wood engraving under Thomas Smith. When Kidston relocated to St Andrews with her sister, she teamed up with the McKenzie sisters (Winifred and Alison) who also practised wood engraving, and together they ran a series of art classes for allied forces stationed in the town during the Second World War.
In lots 658 and 660, Kidston has captured tender moments between a mother and her children – the former is a dramatic yet sensitive depiction of a family sharing a still summer evening, whilst the latter is a humorous scene that captures the frustrations of juggling motherhood and the daily errands. Lot 659 is a quiet harbour scene and Kidston has wonderfully captured the twinkling moonlight in the water through delicate yet effective strokes in the wood.
These pieces would be wonderful additions to any budding print collector (I must admit I am tempted myself) and each are offered with an attractive estimate of £80-120 each.
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