Hanging a Rebel: The Life of C.R.W. Nevinson

By Michael J.K. Walsh

The definitive study of the artist and writer C.R.W. Nevinson, making a major contribution to the understanding of intellectual culture in 20th-century Britain.

ISBN: 9780718830908


The first comprehensive study of the life and work of C.R.W. Nevinson, an important painter and writer whose name is re-emerging to take its rightful place among the established icons of art and literature in early 20th century England.

Numerous previous accounts remember Nevinson solely as a Futurist and war painter. However, in recent years there has been a revival of academic interest in his role in the inter-war period and the Second World War, and with it, the need for a full study of his life and works. Painter, social commentator, novelist and society host, Nevinson can now be remembered as one of the most prominent and distinguished artists of his generation.

In this interdisciplinary work, Walsh presents a thorough analysis of Nevinson’s artistic achievements, explaining his problematic relationships with contemporaries like Wyndham Lewis, Roger Fry, Amadeo Modigliani, H.G. Wells and George Bernard Shaw.

This book gives the reader a wider understanding of the changing cultural landscape of Britain between 1889 and 1946 and introduces the figure of C.R.W. Nevinson in context, providing an objective and captivating account of his explosive and multi-layered personality.

Additional information

Dimensions 234 × 156 mm
Pages 368

Trade Information LPOD

About the Author

Michael J.K. Walsh is a regarded academic in the field of English Modernism and the development of intellectual thought before and during the First World War. He is Associate Professor of Art History and Chair of the Department of Archaeology and Art History at the Eastern Mediterranean University in Famagusta, North Cyprus. He is author of C.R.W. Nevinson: This Cult of Violence and editor of A Dilemma of English Modernism and the forthcoming Avant Garde and Avant Guerre: London, Modernism and 1914.


List of Illustrations

1. Internationalism and Intellectualism, The Nevinsons (1889-1909)
2. Made at the Slade (1909-1912)
3. Paris, London and the Bon Viveur (1912-13)
4. ‘The Distinction of Abdiel’, England’s Only Futurist (1914)
5. The Western Front I, Nevinson’s War (1914-1915)
6. The Western Front II, ‘Le Beau dans l’Horrible’ (1916)
7. The Western Front III, ‘From the Barren Wilderness of Abstraction’ (1917-1918)
8. The Post-War Dream (1919)
9. New York, Prague and The Waste Land (1920-21)
10. ‘The Playboy of the West-End World’, London and Paris (1922-1925)
11. The Lives of a Modern Bohemian (1926-29)
12. Visions of the Apocalypse and the Warnings of Cassandra (1930-1932)
13. ‘The Strangest Manifestations’ (1933-35)
14. A Prodigal’s Return (1936-39)
15. C.R.W. Nevinson’s Second Great War (1939-1945)
16. The Death of a ‘Beau Saboteur’ (1946)

Index of Names
Art Index


Endorsements and Reviews

Walsh’s extensive research provides evidence that is both entertaining and troubling about Nevinson, the society host who became increasingly haunted by a persecution mania. It is good that the biography of this troubled yet immensely gifted artist is now available. Michael Walsh’s engaging account in Hanging a Rebel, and his explorations elsewhere of the artist and his milieu, aid our understanding of the life and work of C.R.W. Nevinson.
Journal of Historical Biography

This is a fair account of ‘a disagreeable, disappointed man’, as he once termed himself.
Andrew Lambirth, in The Art Newspaper, No 199

This biography makes a fine addition to the historiography of war and culture …
Mark Connelly, in War in History, January 2010