A sketchbook, with twenty six watercolour, pen and ink and pencil sketches, pencil notes and a poem
No Place No Publisher.
A Winsor and Newton sketchbook; 25.5 x 20.5cm; original card covers; sixty eight pages. Twenty six watercolour, pen and ink and pencil sketches, with pencil notes and a poem, some pages blank. Barbara Jones was born in Croydon, Surrey. Her father had a saddlery and harness business at a time when Croydon was still a rural suburb. Her first sketchbooks were filled with horses and farm machinery. This current book has a number of sketches of farm animals, including a superb water colour of a bull. Between 1931 and 1933 she attended Croydon Art School and went on to the Department of Engraving at the Royal College of Art and later transferred to the Department of Mural Decoration. She was taught by Eric Ravilious and Edward Bawden and graduated in 1937. During World War II Jones was associated with the Recording Britain project of the Pilgrim Trust while the War Artists' Advisory Committee also purchased a work by her. The Architectural Press commissioned her to illustrate a booklet, Bombed Churches as War Memorials (1945). It is interesting to note that loosely inserted in this album is an ink sketch of a woman to the reverse of which are a series of notes relating to the Bombed churches project. After the war, Jones created murals for the 1946 Britain Can Make It exhibition, and the 1947 Enterprise Scotland exhibition. She also worked for P&O, creating murals for a number of passenger liner ships, as well as for hotels, restaurants, exhibitions and schools. She also worked on the children's television series The Woodentops. Most of the works, because of the nature of where they were created, have now disappeared. In 1951 Jones co-curated Black Eyes and Lemonade, an exhibition of craft, folk, and popular objects at the Whitechapel Gallery. Jones put folk art in dialogue with consumer objects—some of which were mass-produced—to explore the "bold and fizzy" characteristics of contemporary popular art in Britain. Jones, made public many of the ideas that would later become important for the emergence of pop art. Objects displayed in the exhibition included horse brasses, corn dollies, canal boat artwork, ship's figureheads, and the outfits of Pearly Kings and Queens, alongside more contemporary cultural artefacts including the Idris Talking Lemon, beer mats, pest control adverts and shop posters. It is difficult to date the current sketchbook but one page is headed Sheriff Road, in Hampstead where she lived after the War, but it likely that sketches are from an earlier period and she later used it as note book for ideas and poems. Pages loose and covers worn with use, internally fine.