Augustus John

& the First Crisis of Brilliance
Dr David Boyd Haycock, 2024
Augustus John: & the First Crisis of Brilliance
Publisher: Piano Nobile Publications
Dimensions: 28.8 x 24.8 x 2cm
Pages: 128
ISBN: 978-1-901192-65-0
£ 40.00

Augustus John & the First Crisis of Brilliance tells the story of a remarkable generation and its artistic achievements. Accompanying Piano Nobile’s exhibition of the same title, the publication explores the artistic networks around Augustus John before the First World War. John was closely acquainted with many of his highly talented contemporaries and this publication considers his relationship to Jacob Epstein, James Dickson Innes, Gwen John, Henry Lamb, Derwent Lees, Wyndham Lewis and William Orpen.


The publication includes an introductory essay by Dr David Boyd Haycock discussing Augustus John and the notion of genius. A selection of over forty paintings, drawings and sculptures illuminates some of the key themes at play in John’s milieu, and each work is accompanied by thoroughly researched catalogue entries by Dr Haycock. Themes and subjects include friendship and family portraits, the muses Dorelia McNeill and Euphemia Lamb, and the landscapes of Wales, Provence and Ireland.


Dr Haycock is a specialist on British art in the first half of the twentieth century and the author of several acclaimed books including A Crisis of Brilliance: Five Young British Artists and the Great War (2009) and Brilliant Destiny: The Age of Augustus John (2023). He has previously curated Piano Nobile’s Paul Nash Watercolours 1910–1946: Another Life, Another World (2014) and Dulwich Picture Gallery’s British Surrealism(2020).