Unframed (ref: 5363)
Oil and wax, 3 panels, 6 x 12 ft (1.8 x 3.6 m.)
Provenance: Acquired from the artist’s studio, NW3, in 2010
Exhibited: Mural Art Today, Victoria & Albert Museum, 1962, no. 18.
Literature: Mural Art Today, 1962, Victoria & Albert Museum, p. 8, (reproduced p. 24); Ruth Artmonsky, Barbara Jones, Artmonsky Arts, 2008, p.142; British Murals and Decorative Painting 1920-1960, Sansom & Co, 2013, p.333
Ruth Artmonksy records that Jones produced 29 murals of which only two are thought to have survived, (Ruth Artmonsky, Barbara Jones, Artmonsky Arts, 2008, p. 114).This statistic is probably indicative of a 90% destruction rate that British murals have in general been subjected to in the twentieth century.
‘In Out in the Hall Jones showed her creative confidence in caricaturing an Edwardian house entrance hall, along with compulsory hatstand and family portrait; yet dominating the scene is a large stuffed bear carrying a tray! The whole image was built up over three panels, some 12 ft in length, and much resembles the hallway to Barbara’s own house, filled as it was with macabre miscellanea.’ (Ruth Artmonsky, British Murals & Decorative Painting 1920-1960, Sansom & Co, 2013, p.333)
Painter, designer, illustrator and author, born in Croydon, Surrey, she first studied art at her local art school under Isabel Wrightson, 1931-1933, before gaining a scholarship to RCA, 1933-1936, where she studied under Ravilious, Bawden and Charles Mahoney, in the mural painting school. She was a distinctive landscape painter and one of the strongest contributors to the World War II Pilgrim Trust Recording Britain project. She wrote and illustrated books on design history, on subjects including Grottoes and Follies, The Isle of Wight, and The Unsophisticated Arts. She also designed murals - for the Commonwealth Institute, London, and Cheshire County Police Headquarters - and was a member of the Society of Mural Painters. She was responsible for the Whitechapel Gallery exhibition Black Eyes and Lemonade in 1951. In the same year she was heavily involved in the Festival of Britain, designing murals and mosaic, and produced her seminal book The Unsophisticated Arts. She was married to the painter Cliff Barry, whom she met at the Royal College, but of whom little is known. He was however responsible for designing the cover of his wife's first book, The Isle of Wight. A retrospective exhibition was held at Katharine House Gallery, Marlborough, in 2000.