Family Group Sheet
Family Group Sheet
NameClive Heward BELL
Birth1881
Death1964
SpouseVanessa STEPHEN
Birth1879
Death1961
FatherSir Leslie STEPHEN KCB (1832-1904)
MotherJulia Prinsep JACKSON (1846-1895)
Children
Birth1910
Death1996
Notes for Clive Heward BELL
Arthur Clive Heward Bell (16 September 1881, East Shefford – 18 September 1964, London) was an English Art critic, associated with formalism and the Bloomsbury Group.

]Biography

[edit]Origins
Bell was born in East Shefford, Berkshire, in 1881. He was the third of four children of William Heward Bell (1849–1927) and Hannah Taylor Cory (1850–1942), with an elder brother (Cory), an elder sister (Lorna Bell Acton), and a younger sister (Dorothy Bell Honey). His father was a civil engineer who built his fortune in the family coal mines in Wiltshire in England and Merthyr Tydfil in Wales, and the family was well off. They lived at Cleve House in Seend near Melksham in Wiltshire, which was adorned with Squire Bell's many hunting trophies.

]Marriage and other relationships

He was educated at Marlborough and at Trinity College, Cambridge,[1] where he studied history. In 1902 he received an Earl of Derby scholarship to study in Paris, where his interest in art originated. On his return to England, he moved to London, where he met and married the artist Vanessa Stephen — sister of Virginia Woolf — in 1907. Reportedly, Virginia flirted with Clive despite her sister's marriage to him.[2]
By World War I their marriage was over. Vanessa had begun a lifelong relationship with Duncan Grant and Clive had a number of liaisons with other women such as Mary Hutchinson. However, Clive and Vanessa never officially separated or divorced. Not only did they keep visiting each other regularly, they also sometimes spent holidays together and paid "family" visits to Clive's parents. Clive lived in London but often spent long stretches of time at the idyllic farmhouse of Charleston, where Vanessa lived with Duncan and her three children by Clive and Duncan. He fully supported her wish to have a child by Duncan and allowed this daughter, Angelica, to bear his last name.

Clive and Vanessa had two sons (Julian and Quentin), who both became writers. Julian fought and died aged 29 in the Spanish Civil War in 1937.

Vanessa's daughter by Duncan, Angelica Garnett (née Bell), was raised as Clive's daughter until she married. She was informed, by her mother Vanessa, just prior to her marriage and shortly after her brother Julian's death that in fact Duncan Grant was her biological father. This deception forms the central message of her memoir, Deceived with Kindness (1984).

According to historian Stanley Rosenbaum, "Bell may, indeed, be the least liked member of Bloomsbury. Bell has been found wanting by biographers and critics of the Group – as a husband, a father, and especially a brother-in-law. It is undeniable that he was a wealthy snob, hedonist, and womaniser, a racist and an anti-Semite (but not a homophobe), who changed from a liberal socialist and pacifist into a reactionary appeaser. Bell’s reputation has led to his being underestimated in the history of Bloomsbury."

Ideas

Bell was one of the most prominent proponents of formalism in aesthetics. In general formalism (which can be traced back at least to Kant) is the view that it is an object's formal properties which make something art, or which define aesthetic experiences. Bell proposed that nothing else about an object is in any way relevant to assessing whether it is a work of art, or aesthetically valuable. What a painting represents, for example, is completely irrelevant to evaluating it aesthetically. Consequently, he believed that knowledge of the historical context of a painting, or the intention of the painter is unnecessary for the appreciation of visual art. He wrote: "to appreciate a work of art we need bring with us nothing from life, no knowledge of its ideas and affairs, no familiarity with its emotions"(Bell, 27).

Formalist theories differ according to how the notion of 'form' is understood. For Kant, it meant roughly the shape of an object – colour was not an element in the form of an object. For Bell, by contrast, "the distinction between form and colour is an unreal one; you cannot conceive of a colourless space; neither can you conceive a formless relation of colours"(Bell p19). Bell famously coined the term 'significant form' to describe the distinctive type of "combination of lines and colours" which makes an object a work of art.

Bell was also a key proponent of the claim that the value of art lies in its ability to produce a distinctive aesthetic experience in the viewer. Bell called this experience "aesthetic emotion". He defined it as that experience which is aroused by significant form. He also suggested that the reason we experience aesthetic emotion in response to the significant form of a work of art was that we perceive that form as an expression of an experience the artist has. The artist's experience in turn, he suggested, was the experience of seeing ordinary objects in the world as pure form: the experience one has when one sees something not as a means to something else, but as an end in itself (Bell, 45).

Bell believed that ultimately the value of anything whatever lies only in its being a means to "good states of mind" (Bell, 83). Since he also believed that "there is no state of mind more excellent or more intense than the state of aesthetic contemplation" (Bell, 83) he believed that works of visual art were among the most valuable things there could be. Like many in the Bloomsbury group, Bell was heavily influenced in his account of value by the philosopher G.E. Moore.
Notes for Vanessa STEPHEN
Vanessa Bell (née Stephen; 30 May 1879 – 7 April 1961) was an English painter and interior designer, a member of the Bloomsbury group, and the sister of Virginia Woolf.

Biography and art

Vanessa Stephen was the eldest daughter of Sir Leslie Stephen and Julia Princep Duckworth (1846–1895). Her parents lived at 22 Hyde Park Gate, Westminster, London, and Vanessa lived there until 1904. She was educated at home by her parents in languages, mathematics and history, and took drawing lessons from Ebenezer Cook before she attended Sir Arthur Cope's art school in 1896, and then studied painting at the Royal Academy in 1901.
In later life, Stephen claimed that during her childhood she had been sexually molested by her half-brothers, George and Gerald Duckworth.

After the deaths of her mother in 1895 and her father in 1904, Vanessa sold 22 Hyde Park Gate and moved to Bloomsbury with Virginia and brothers Thoby (1880–1906) and Adrian (1883–1948), where they met and began socialising with the artists, writers and intellectuals who would come to form the Bloomsbury Group.

She married Clive Bell in 1907 and they had two sons, Julian (who died in 1937 during the Spanish Civil War at the age of 29), and Quentin. The couple had an open marriage, both taking lovers throughout their lives. Vanessa Bell had affairs with art critic Roger Fry and with the painter Duncan Grant, with whom she had a daughter, Angelica in 1918, whom Clive Bell raised as his own child.[1]

Vanessa, Clive, Duncan Grant and Duncan's lover David Garnett moved to the Sussex countryside shortly before the outbreak of First World War, and settled at Charleston Farmhouse near Firle, East Sussex, where she and Grant painted and worked on commissions for the Omega Workshops established by Roger Fry.

Vanessa Bell's significant paintings include Studland Beach (1912), The Tub (1918), Interior with Two Women (1932), and portraits of her sister Virginia Woolf (three in 1912), Aldous Huxley (1929–1930), and David Garnett (1916).

She is considered one of the major contributors to British portrait drawing and landscape art in the 20th century.

She is portrayed by Janet McTeer in the 1995 Dora Carrington biopic Carrington, and by Miranda Richardson in the 2002 film The Hours alongside Nicole Kidman as Virginia Woolf. Vanessa Bell is also the subject of Susan Sellers' novel Vanessa and Virginia.
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