Biography

Vivian Forbes (1891-1937) was an English soldier, painter and poet in the early 20th century, known for his relationship with painter Glyn Philpot.

Forbes was enlisted in the Royal Fusiliers and met Philpot at a training in Aldershot in 1915. He was involved in business in Egypt after the war, and before beginning a more serious relationship with Philpot. Like Philpot, Forbes' work was affected by concern over the rise of fascism in Europe, and he was influenced by the 19th century Aestheticism movement, and painters like Charles Ricketts and Charles Haslewood Shannon. Forbes also composed poetry, all of it dedicated to Philpot and their relationship. Forbes, Philpot, Ricketts and Shannon all had studios at some point in the Lansdown Road building of the Ladbroke Estate.

Described as witty and charming, Forbes was also unstable, and his relationship with Philpot was very close. Following Philpot's suddenly death on 18 December 1937, Forbes was overcome with grief, and committed suicide using sleeping pills on 23 December after Philpot's funeral.

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