EDWIN SMITH (1912-1971)
'Attempts at Concorde'
Initialled lower RHS
Titled on reverse 'attempts at Concorde'
Image 34x23cm frame 44x33cm
original metal frame
There appears to be a felled tree and a cowering man. A friend suggested that this image is linked to Olive Cook's anti Stanstead Airport protest movement and book 'The Stanstead Affair' by Olive Cook published in 1967.
When Edwin Smith died in 1971 he was famed as a photographic recorder of the nation’s traditional landscape and architecture. He was best known for his distinctive vignettes of English gardens, landscapes, and architecture. On his own or in partnership with his wife, the artist and writer Olive Cook, he authored or contributed to numerous books during his lifetime and his photographs are still regularly used today.
Although it was in photography that he found artistic success, his real peers are artists like Edward Bawden, Peggy Angus, Enid Marx, John Piper and Eric Ravilious. Edwin Smith would have preferred to be remembered as an artist than a photographer. His drawings and paintings are very accomplished; he liked to make at least 2 per day, even when he was earning his living as a photographer. The distinction between artist and photographer is much more blurred now than in his day, a blurring that I think he would approve of.
A large collection of his work can be found at The Fry Gallery.