'Purple Iris' an envelope drawing by
Margaret Mellis 1914-2000
Chalk on a used and opened envelope, one of the 'Envelope Drawings', signed with initials, 37 x 23 cms.
An outstanding artist of the 20th century, Margaret Mellis trained initially at the Edinburgh School of Art, tutored by the Scottish Colourist, S.J. Peploe, She continued to study then in Paris under Andre L'hote followed by the Euston Road School. She and her first husband, Adrian Stokes, joined the coterie of artists arriving in St Ives by 1939. During the 40's she was deeply influenced by Ben Nicholson and the constructivist, Naum Gabo. Divorced and remarried to Francis Davison, the couple departed the intrigues of St Ives for the calmer aspects of Suffolk, settling in a small village outside Southwold. She was an outstanding maker of constructions and reliefs using found objects and driftwoods, for some time she was friend and mentor to the young Damien Hirst.
Her exhibition record is both public and private but includes galleries in London and Edinburgh. Public collections holding her work include the Victoria and Albert Museum.
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