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Lucky to Be an Artist

Stanley Spencer’s 1937 painting of his wife and daughter, Hilda, Unity, and Dolls is famous both as a painting and as the complicated public face of a difficult, even unpleasant family story. A few years before, Spencer had left his wife Hilda and daughter Unity for a new lover, a painter whom he would go on to marry—and eventually learn was a fraud. Hilda, Unity, and Dolls depicts the women he had left behind, more or less at the moment when Hilda rejected reconciliation.

This book tells that story—and much, much more—from Unity’s perspective. An engaging, moving, and surprisingly light-hearted account of a life that had its share of sorrow, Lucky to Be an Artist is an account of an unconventional family and the birth of an artist, as well as the tale of a woman who refused to be held back by early trauma and insisted on forging her own artistic path. 

256 pages | 100 color plates | 9 1/2 x 10 | © 2015

Art: Art--General Studies

Biography and Letters

Table of Contents

Foreword by John Snow
Family Trees
Carlines and Spencers
Picture Credits

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