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Augustus Edwin John, O.M., R.A. (1878-1961)
Artist's Resale Right ("Droit de Suite"). Artist's… Read more THE COLLECTION OF ELIZABETH TAYLOR Augustus John is one of the most celebrated British artists of the early twentieth century. He was associated with the New English Art Club and the Camden Town Group but remained largely independent from artistic trends and movements. By the 1920s he was the leading portraitist of his day whose sitters included many of his most distinguished contemporaries such as George Bernard Shaw and T.E. Lawrence. Alongside these achievements his lifestyle epitomised that of the bohemian artist, a reputation bolstered by his fascination with Romany culture. The Taylor family home in Hampstead, where Elizabeth was born in 1932, had previously been owned by Augustus John, whose paintings remained on the walls when the Taylors moved in. Elizabeth's father Frank Taylor was an art dealer with a gallery located at 35 Old Bond Street in London. He established a close relationship with the Welsh artist. After relocating with his family to sunny California during the war, Frank opened an art gallery at the Château Elysée, but quickly relocated it to the more impressive Beverly Hills Hotel. It was at that location that such celebrities as Howard Duff, Vincent Price, James Mason, Alan Ladd, Hedda Hopper and Greta Garbo could be found selecting art for their own collections. Frank Taylor acted as John's American agent for many years and was responsible for the artist's popularity in the United States. The two men corresponded frequently. In a letter of 25 June 1943 Frank Taylor wrote to Augustus John: 'We have settled down to living in California and our young daughter is by way of being a movie star, if you see a picture Lassie Come Home which will be released in September, she is in that with Roddy Macdowal, Nigel Bruce, Dame May Whitty and a lot of people, she did a bit in Jane Eyre and will be in The White Cliffs of Dover, also she may get the leading part in National Velvet, even if you are not a movie fan see the Lassie picture it is in colour and is beautiful'. Miss Taylor inherited this collection of works from her father, and they remained in her homes throughout her life. We are grateful to Rebecca John for her assistance in preparing the catalogue entries for these works.
Augustus Edwin John, O.M., R.A. (1878-1961)

Portrait of Poppet, the artist's daughter, in a black hat

Details
Augustus Edwin John, O.M., R.A. (1878-1961)
Portrait of Poppet, the artist's daughter, in a black hat
signed 'John' (upper right)
oil on canvas
30 x 25 in. (78.7 x 63.5 cm.)
Painted circa 1935
Provenance
Dalzell Hatfield Galleries, Los Angeles.
Acquired by the late owner by 1979.
Special Notice

Artist's Resale Right ("Droit de Suite"). Artist's Resale Right Regulations 2006 apply to this lot, the buyer agrees to pay us an amount equal to the resale royalty provided for in those Regulations, and we undertake to the buyer to pay such amount to the artist's collection agent.
VAT rate of 5% is payable on hammer price and at 20% on the buyer's premium.

Brought to you by

India Phillips
India Phillips

Lot Essay

Born in 1912, Poppet was the eldest daughter of Augustus and Dorelia John. Originally named Elizabeth Ann or Lizzie, she was nicknamed Poppet when Caspar, one of her half-brothers, gazing at the newly-arrived baby exclaimed, 'What a little poppet!'. David Herbert wrote in his autobiography that she grew up to be 'extremely attractive, she had almost as many boyfriends as her father had mistresses' (D. Herbert, Second Son, London, 1973, p. 61). She married three times, first in 1931, to the atomic physicist Derek Jackson, then to Villiers Bergne and finally to Willem Pol, a Dutch artist who had endured the atrocities of a Japanese prisoner of war camp in Indonesia. His daughter Talitha studied acting (landing a small part in Elizabeth Taylor's Cleopatra) and became a style icon in the late 1960s after marrying the oil heir and future philanthropist Sir Paul Getty. She lived her short adult life between London, Rome and Marrakesh and after her death in 1971 her son Tara Getty (b. 1968) was raised by Poppet and Willem Pol at their home in the South of France. Poppet died in 1997.

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