Augustus John and his Galway Connections
JOHN, Augustus, painter [1878-1961]. An attractive ink drawing of a nude woman, rear view, drying herself with her elbow on a pillar, signed lower right ‘John’, 9 ins x 7 ¼ ins, framed and glazed.
With an autograph signed letter (2 pp, single sheet) from John (giving a Salisbury address, dated ‘Friday’), to a Mr. Conroy, saying he spoke to Mr. McDonough about rooms [in Galway] but has heard nothing, and asking Conroy to make enquiries about the rooms, ‘those behind the new dock .. If I had these rooms and got them simply furnished I would come over to Galway to do some work’. Also mentions Macnamara, presumably Francis, father of Caitlin, who married Dylan Thomas (after having an affair with John).
Also with an autograph signed letter to John, March 1902, 1 pp, addressed from ‘On the Veldt, Western Transvaal’, from Tom McDonagh (probably one of the Galway merchant family). ‘I am now trekking with Keirs Column .. under Walter Kitchener, in all I think we have about 20,000 men & and are in search for Boers .. I expect there will be a hell of a fight soon. I am with the field hospital. I expect this time they will collar De La Rey for we are after him .. Don’t write, we may be away three months.’ The letter in two portions, with tape stains at the separation.
A most interesting collection, which effectively authenticates the drawing. Augustus John did stay in Galway for a time, and produced a major mural painting there; he also stayed at Coole with Robert Gregory. As a collection, w.a.f. (1)