Talk: Eileen Mayo & ArtReview

Join us for this special panel discussion – 29 June, 5pm on Zoom – to celebrate the exhibition Eileen Mayo: A Natural History at Towner Eastbourne

Eileen Mayo: A Natural History, 12 February to 3 July 2022, Towner Eastbourne. Installation view. Photo by Rob Harris.

Mayo specialists, family members and contributors to ArtReview come together to discuss the artist’s history and relationship to the magazine and the printed form. 

Art News and Review (predecessor to ArtReview) was the brainchild of Richard Gainsborough, a retired British doctor, who felt there was a gap in the market for an art title that would appeal to an audience beyond the Cork Street in-crowd. It operated out of a one-room office in Chelsea with the stated aim of representing the world of the artist to the world of the collector and an ambition to cover every exhibition on view in Britain.

Joining Gainsborough was his then wife Eileen Mayo, a designer of some note, who had studied with Fernand Léger in Paris and art-directed until the couple’s separation. Mayo would emigrate to New Zealand, where, among her achievements, she designed stamps for the postal service of her adopted country. Art News and Review made much of its coverage of artists in lesser-known groups based outside London or in the capital’s less-fashionable suburbs. Early articles charted the art being made in India, China, Mexico and particularly South Africa, Gainsborough’s former home, among other scenes. 

Register here.

About the panelists:

Sara Cooper is Head of Collections and Exhibitions at Towner Eastbourne, where she is responsible for the exhibition programme and for the permanent collection, including overseeing acquisitions.

John Gainsborough is Eileen Mayo’s stepson and a retired architect. He was also the publisher and editor of Arts Review (as it was renamed) following the death of his father Richard Gainsborough. He has written the book Eileen Mayo DBE. Artist, Illustrator, Designer and Model to accompany the Towner Eastbourne exhibition of her works.

Lucie Stanford is an Australian General Practitioner and Medical Educator who works and lives in a country town, two hours south of Sydney. She is the great-niece of Dame Eileen Mayo and an avid collector and custodian of the world’s largest private collection of Eileen Mayo pieces. Her interest in Eileen’s work has taken her into the ‘bowels’ of galleries throughout the world and connected her with fellow admirers.

John Quin is a writer and retired physician based in Brighton. He writes regularly on art and literature for ArtReview and The Quietus. His work has also appeared in The GuardianBMJLancetThe Wire, and frieze. His book Dr. Quin, Medicine Man came out in paperback this year and picked up a four star review in The Times.

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