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Vanessa BellRoger FryDuncan Grant
Starting out

Duncan Grant was born in Scotland in 1885. His father was a major in the army, and much of his early childhood was spent in India and Burma. He returned to England in 1894 to attend school.

Lytton Strachey Lytton Strachey
© Tate Archive, 2003
Grant showed little enthusiasm for studying but enjoyed art classes. He was encouraged by his art teacher and also his aunt Lady Strachey, who organised private drawing lessons for him. Eventually, he was allowed to follow his desire to become an artist, rather than joining the army as his father wished, and he attended Westminster School of Art in 1902.

Grant's cousins the Stracheys, with whom he had spent summer holidays as a schoolboy, played an important part in his life during this period. He spent the summer of 1905 with Lytton Strachey, and around the same time Pippa Strachey took Duncan to a meeting of the Friday Club where he first met the 'Bloomsbury artists'.
Duncan Grant Duncan Grant
© Tate Archive, 2003