(Enlarged Photo)

Eric Henri Kennington R.A (1888-1960)

Sir John Lowe

Pastel , signed and dated 1922

Kennington's portraiture is among the most instantly recognisable of the early 20th Century. This powerful and brooding pastel dates from 1922 when Kennington had just received the most significant commission of his life – the illustration of T.E. Lawrence's 'Seven Pillars of Wisdom'. Somewhat surprisingly, this unsparing depiction of Indian Civil Service grandee, Sir John Lowe, was a family commission. Lowe was related to Edith Celandine Cecil, a Scottish aristocrat who had divorced her previous husband to marry Kennington earlier the same year. Lowe's widow is known to have praised the verisimilitude of the portrait, which Kennington's biographer, Dr Jonathan Black, has described as “a powerful and weighty portrait”.

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