This collection consists of material sent from John Banting to the photographer and Mass Observation researcher, Humphrey Spender. The correspondence in this collection spans the period from the early 1930s to circa. 1970. Many of these letters are illustrated and decorated by John Banting. Meanwhile the sketchbook appears to cover a period before John Banting's solo exhibition at the Storran Gallery in 1938 and includes drawings of unidentified individuals who may have been friends of Banting at this time, as well as numerous sketches of natural and abstract or surreal forms. Items of correspondence, also contained within this collection, suggest that Spender may have taken this sketchbook to work on when staying in the Spender's cottage in Sussex.
- Collection Owner
- John Humphrey Spender 1910–2005
- Tate Archive
- This collection was presented to the Tate Archive by Humphrey Spender in 1997.
- TGA 9717
36 objects in this collection
- Correspondence, loose sketches and proof prints from John Banting to Humphrey Spender
- The correspondence in this series spans the period from the early 1930s to c 1970, with the majority of correspondence dating from c 1936-1940. Many of the letters are written on the back of proof prints of work by John Banting. Many are also illustrated and decorated by hand, and reveal reflections by Banting on his own art practice, his friends and lovers, as well as mention of is mother and father, who it appears were unwell during the late 1930s. Two of the letters also make reference to his visit to Spain with Nancy Cunard, towards the end of the Spainish Civil War.
Also included are two sheets of original drawings by John Banting (TGA 9717/1/2, TGA 9717/1/3), which appear to be studies towards a portrait of Humphrey Spender. The portrait, and a similar one that Banting undertook of Humphrey Spender's first wife, Margaret Low, are referred to in the letters.
- TGA 9717/1