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Artists Dora Carrington
Dora Carrington Photo

Dora Carrington

British Painter and Decorative Artist

Movement: Proto-Feminist Artists

Born: March 29, 1893 - Hereford, England

Died: March 11, 1932 - Newbury, England

Dora Carrington Timeline

Quotes

"I would like this year (since for the first time I seem to be without any relations to complicate me) to do more painting. But this is a resolution I have made for the last 10 years."
Dora Carrington
"I believe if one wasn't reserved, and hadn't a sense of what is possible one could be very fond of certainly two or three people at a time, to know human beings intimately, to feel their affection, to have their confidences is so absorbing that it's clearly absurd to think one only has the inclination for one variety."
Dora Carrington
"What a damned mess I make of my life and the thing I want most to do, I never seem to bring off. My work disappoints me terribly. I feel so good, so powerful before I start and then when it's finished, I realise each time, it is nothing but a failure."
Dora Carrington
"So few women have reached any high plane of creators. And the few that did become artists, I think you will admit, were never married, or had children."
Dora Carrington
"My new studio is going to be lovely. I shall when it's finished, completely change my character and become a very hardened recluse and paint pictures all day. Then all these spinster ravings will no longer blast my letters to you."
Dora Carrington
"About the more modern stuff I am not really at all sure: there is nothing that takes one's breath away like those masters."
Dora Carrington

"If only I had any money I should not be obliged to stick at home like this. And to earn money every day, and paint what one wants to, seems almost impossible."

Synopsis

Dora Carrington's impressive body of work is often overshadowed by the fiery dramas of her personal and romantic life. Indeed it can be difficult to ignore her many unconventional romances, her ambiguous sexual identity, and the dramatic suicide that ended her life when she was only thirty-eight years old. But looking beyond her sensational biography and carefully examining her work - which took the form of both painting and decorative arts - reveals an artist with a singular perspective. She was an artist who did not allow herself to be hemmed in by the trends of contemporary art. Instead, Carrington brought a unique blend of styles to her work, drawing from movements as disparate as Impressionism, Primitivism, and Surrealism. Most of her paintings are landscapes and portraits, and her sensitive rendering of her subjects reveals an artist with a keen eye who made an unrivalled contribution to European art of the early-20th century.

Key Ideas

Working in a variety of styles, Carrington defied the artistic conventions of her contemporaries. Regardless of the style she worked in, a certain psychological depth was always there. From the penetrating intimacy of her portraits to the symbolism and mystery of her landscapes, emotional depth was a hallmark of her work.
Carrington was virtually unknown for her art during her own lifetime and seems to have received little encouragement from her peers to exhibit her work. It was not until the latter half of the 20th century that her work received widespread recognition.
Although her work does not overtly address feminism or women's issues, both Carrington's lack of critical recognition and her interest in "feminine" subjects - landscapes of her home, decorative arts, portraits of personal acquaintances - subtly reveal the perspectives of women in early-20th-century Europe, especially the struggles of women artists working in that context.

Biography

Dora Carrington Photo

Childhood

Dora Carrington was the fourth of five children - the second of two daughters. Her parents were Samuel Carrington, a railway engineer, and his wife, Charlotte Houghton. Her earliest days were spent in Hereford, a short distance east of Wales. Several years later the family moved to Rothsay Gardens in Bedford.

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Dora Carrington Biography Continues

Influences and Connections

Influences on Artist
Artists, Friends, Movements
Influenced by Artist
Artists, Friends, Movements
Dora Carrington
Interactive chart with Dora Carrington's main influences, and the people and ideas that the artist influenced in turn.
View Influences Chart

Artists

Francisco GoyaFrancisco Goya
Diego VelazquezDiego Velazquez
Dante Gabriel RossettiDante Gabriel Rossetti

Personal Contacts

Clive BellClive Bell
Roger FryRoger Fry

Movements

The Pre-RaphaelitesThe Pre-Raphaelites
Post-ImpressionismPost-Impressionism

Influences on Artist
Dora Carrington
Dora Carrington
Years Worked: 1905 - 1932
Influenced by Artist

Artists

Alice NeelAlice Neel
Tracey EminTracey Emin

Personal Contacts

Aldous HuxleyAldous Huxley
D. H. LawrenceD. H. Lawrence

Movements


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Edited and published by The Art Story Contributors

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Content compiled and written by The Art Story Contributors
Edited and published by The Art Story Contributors
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