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Graham Twemlow

A retired University Lecturer I currently write and give talks on subjects relating to Design History, Printing History, and the Decorative Arts


My MA (Southampton Solent University) was titled ‘Fine Arts Valuation’. It was a unique University course at the time – only auction houses such as Sotheby’s and Christie’s offered something along the same lines. Modules on fine art, ceramic design, furniture design, and British watercolour artists were central to the course. My dissertation tackled the rising interest in illustrated posters as works of art, with auction houses such as Christie’s creating (in the mid-1980s) a separate department dealing exclusively with vintage posters. 


I became increasingly interested in how posters were produced. I could find very few historical or contemporary references as to what happens when an original poster design leaves the artist's hands and goes to the lithographic printers. For my PhD (Dept of Typography & Graphic Communication, University of Reading, UK) I chose one poster artist who bridged the interwar period in the UK – E. McKnight Kauffer (1890-1954) - as an exemplar in my investigation of this phenomenon. 

In 2005 I assisted Mark Haworth-Booth in updating and re-issuing his seminal 1979 monograph E McKnight Kauffer: a designer and his public. It was published by V&A Publishing with many more colour images from the vast Victoria & Albert Museum collection. I also created a new catalogue raisonné of his posters.

I currently offer a number of talks either via Zoom or live. I have given talks at venues such as the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford; the River & Rowing Museum, Henley on Thames; the Royal Society of Arts, London; Christie’s South Kensington; the Grolier Club, New York; and various other venues in the UK. These talks and short descriptors can be found under the Talks menu. U


See, also, my Instagram posts Kingdom


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