Eileen Mayo

England / Australia / Aotearoa New Zealand, b.1906, d.1994

Skaters

  • Purchased 2012
  • Wood engraving
  • 113 x 88mm
  • 2012/024
  • 1925

Believed to be one of Eileen Mayo’s first wood engravings, this dynamic monochromatic image of two ice skaters shows her interest in balancing form and movement within a tightly controlled picture space. In 1925, Mayo was in London and had just taken up her studies at the Central School of Arts and Crafts, after two years at the Slade School of Art. She attended evening classes in wood engraving, calligraphy, drawing, lithography and historical costume design, supporting herself by working as a freelance designer during the day. Mayo later worked as a model for a life-class at the Grosvenor School of Modern Art, where she met Claude Flight, the artist and educator who pioneered and popularised the linocut technique and encouraged Mayo to produce her first work in that medium.

(Turn, Turn, Turn: A Year in Art, 27 July 2019 – 8 March 2020)