Ivon Hitchens 1893-1979
Hitchens was born in London and studied first at St John’s Wood Art School in 1911 and then the Royal Academy Schools from 1911-12, again from 1914-16 and finally 1918-19. Hitchens was elected a member of the newly-formed Seven and Five Society in 1920, exhibiting in all its exhibitions until 1935: he would also be an elected member of the London Artists’ Association, the London Group, and the Society of Mural Painters.
His house was bombed in 1940 during World War II, at which point he moved to a caravan on a patch of woodland near Petworth in West Sussex. He worked there for the next forty years, gradually augmenting his caravan with a series of buildings. He is particularly well known for panoramic landscape paintings created from blocks of colour.
His work was exhibited in the British Pavilion at the Venice Biennale in 1956 and the painter Patrick Heron, a champion of Hitchens’s work, wrote in the introduction to the catalogue for the 1956 Venice Biennale show, “Hitchens is Hartung plus Sussex” (P. Heron, ‘Introduction’ in Exhibition of works by Ivon Hitchens and Lynn Chadwick (British Pavilion XXVIII Biennale, 1956), p. 8.). Hitchens’s very identity as an artist was intrinsically tied up with the landscape of Sussex.... read more