The etching is signed and dated ’68 to the lower right corner by the artist. It is numbered 22 of 75 copies. Published by Petersburg Press in 1969 and printed by Maurice Payne on handmade Crisbrooke paper. The sheet margins along two sides have been trimmed by 5 cm, the sheet has water based tape along top edge, some light discolouration from mount, two feint brown marks to right of image-see photograph, else very good.
Plate Size 320 x 350mm (12 2/3 x 13 3/4in)
Sheet Size 495 x 490mm (Should be 490 x 500mm)
Portraits of Ossie Clarke, fashion designer and best friend, & Mo McDermott, Davids Hockney assistant. It was McDermott who introduced Birtwell both to David Hockney and to her future husband and creative partner, Ossie, for his part already impressing his teachers at art school in Manchester at that time.’
Excerpt from: A life in print: Susannah Frankel meet Celia Birtwell. The Independent Newspaper.
‘They must have made a fine couple: Ossie with his thick, dark hair and fine, biblical features, and Celia all blond ringlets, pretty rounded body and face straight out of a Botticelli painting. With Hockney and McDermott, they went on to form what is still described as a Northern invasion of Swinging London, and it wasn’t long before they were its epicentre. Birtwell and Clark lived in west London. He was the most fashionable designer in the world, she the most gifted textile designer of her generation. She moved out of her flat in Ladbroke Grove and into his in neighbouring Westbourne Grove. “I was bitten by cat fleas and he didn’t want me to stay there any more.”
Out of stock