Privately Held

Ithell Colquhoun (1906 - 1988)

Autumnal Equinox

SKU: 10145
Oil on canvas.

Height – 206cm x Width – 81cm


Sotheby’s London, Ithell Colquhoun Studio Sale, April 24, 1985; Leicester Galleries’ Private Collection
London, Suffolk Street Galleries, 1949; Bradford, City of Bradford Art Gallery, Cartwright Hall, Sixtieth Spring Exhibition, 1953, number 286 Exeter, City of Exeter Museums and Art Gallery, Ithell Colquhoun Paintings, Collages and Drawings, 1972, number 3 Penzance, Newlyn Orion Gallery, Ithell Colquhoun: Surrealism, Paintings, Drawings, Collages 1936-76, 1976, number 18 London, Murray Feeley Fine Art, 1992
Daily Mirror, February 19, 1949, illustrated front page. Eric Ratcliffe, Ithell Colquhoun: Pioneer Surrealist Artist, Occultist, Writer and Poet, Mandrake 2016, illustrated in colour plate 80

Inscribed on a label verso Ithell Colquhoun, Stonecross Cottage, Green Land Pound, Penzance; and on another Official agents Alfred Styles and Sons, Autumnal Equinox


Some watercolour studies for the work can be found in the Tate Archive.

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Ithell Colquhoun
1906 - 1988

Ithell Colquhoun studied at Cheltenham Art School (1925’7) and
the Slade School of Fine Art (1927’31), winning joint first prize
with Elizabeth Leslie Arnold (1909′ 2005) in the 1929 Summer
Composition Competition. 

After discovering Surrealism in Paris in 1932, she held her first
solo exhibition at Cheltenham Art Gallery in 1936 and in 1939
joined the British Surrealist Group, showing alongside Roland
Penrose (1900’1984) at the Mayor Gallery that June. She was
particularly interested in automatic painting and how it could unlock
not just the unconscious mind but also the mystical. 

Despite her expulsion from the English Surrealist Group
in 1940 due to her increasing preoccupation with the occult,
Colquhoun remained active in Surrealist circles ‘ she was married to
Toni del Renzio from 1943’48. She wrote and illustrated numerous
books, including The Living Stones: Cornwall (1957), and exhibited
at the Leicester Galleries and with the LG and WIAC. She took part
in several Surrealist retrospectives in the 1970s, including a solo show
at the Newlyn Gallery in 1976, and the terms of her will bequeathed
her studio (over 3000 works) to the National Trust.