1935 - 2009

John Lidzey

Born at Islington, London on 10 January 1935, son of George Harold Lidzey (28 April 1892-1976), a carpenter & joiner, and his wife Mabel Lovett or Levett (11 July 1891-1974), who married at Islington, London in 1926. He studied typographical design at the Camberwell School of Arts and Crafts, London and Hornsey Schools of Art, then worked in an advertising studio, first as a typographer and later as a visualiser. For a decade, he was employed by art studios and design groups, during which time he became an award-winning member of the Society of Industrial Artists. In the late 1960s, he returned to Camberwell as a lecturer in typographic and graphic design, subsequently at Southwark College and in 1987 turned to painting and writing full time. A watercolourist, designer, writer and teacher Lidzey went on to win the Daler-Rowney award at the 1990 Royal Watercolour Society open show and a prize in the Singer and Friedlander/Sunday Times watercolour competition in London's Mall galleries. Looking to subjects further afield, decided to relocate to a remote cottage The Dell, at Flixton, near Bungay, Suffolk. Here, Lidzey and his wife, Elsie, created something altogether gentler and more measured, while carefully maintaining the studied disorder of the garden. A pictorial record of their decade at Flixton remains in a multitude of much-admired Lidzey watercolours of cottage interiors and garden details which together form a portrait of rural and domestic bliss. About 2003 the couple made a final move to nearby Harleston, where the artist wrote the last of his four best-selling how-to-paint books. Lidzey exhibited widely, in London at the Barbican, Royal Festival Hall, Cadogan Contemporary and the New Grafton, Medici, Thackeray, Bankside and Mall galleries. Even when firmly entrenched in East Anglia, he had a well-received 2002 display of London Underground watercolours with Abbott and Holder in Bloomsbury. He also exhibited at the John Russell gallery in Ipswich and still contributing a regular feature in 'The Artist' magazine during treatment for leukaemia. He died on 5 April 2009 being survived by wife Elsie née Fildes, whom he married in 1960, two children, David and Anna

Works by This Painter