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Ida Affleck Graves (1902 - 1999)

  • About
  • Ida Affleck Graves was born in 1902, in Bangalore/Ooty, and was educated at boarding schools in England. Leonard Woolf published The China Cupboard as her first book of poems in 1929.

    Graves inspired artists, poets and collectors of art, many whom became close friends, such as Stella Gibbons, Ivon Hitchens, David Wright, Wilfrid Evill and Blair Hughes-Stanton, with whom she developed a consuming relationship. This relationship resulted in a collaboration on the Gemini Press, and on 'Epithalamion' (1934), a book which obtained outstanding regard at Venice Biennale the following year, both for its poetry and wood engravings. Mother and Child, a long poem, followed in 1945, with frontispiece by Blair Hughes-Stanton. Her novels Willa, You're Wanted (1952), and Elarna Cane (1956) were published by Faber, as were her children's books Ostrobogulous Pigs (1952), Mouse Tash (1953), and Little Thumbamonk (1956).

    Graves is also known for her sculpture, scene-painting for theatre, collage with paper and cloth, and her drawing. Graves was a close observer with a remarkable memory, and recorded her thoughts in the form of poetry, or on paper stuffed away in drawers. Finally, many poems were unveiled and published in A Kind Husband and in The Calfbearer, which was published in 1999, the year of her death.
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