Eileen Agar British, 1899-1991

English painter of Argentine birth. She arrived in England in 1906; in 1924 she studied with Leon Underwood (1890-1975), and she attended the Slade School of Fine Art, London, from 1925 to 1926; she also studied art in Paris from 1928 to 1930. She was a member of the London group from 1933, and her work was selected by Roland Penrose and Herbert Read for the International Surrealist Exhibition at the New Burlington Galleries, London, in 1936. Agar exhibited with the Surrealists both in England and abroad. From 1936 she experimented with automatic techniques and new materials, taking photographs and making collages and objects, for example The Angel of Anarchy(fabric over plaster and mixed media, 1936-40; London, Tate). By the 1960s she was producing Tachist paintings with Surrealist elements. In 1971 the Commonwealth Institute staged a retrospective exhibition for Afgar and in 1977 she appeared (with George Melly, Roland Penrose, Conroy Maddox and Robert Melville) in a TV reconstruction of the British Surrealists (1940) Barcelona Restaurant meeting. In 1985 Agar modelled clothes by Issey Miyake for Lord Snowden and published her autobiography A Look at my Life in 1988. Agar appeared in the Channel Four TV documentary Five Women Artists in 1989 and was elected Academician of the Royal Academy in 1990. Eileen Agar died on 17th November 1991 in London.


Note: We hold a significant collection of Agar's work - enquiries welcome.