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Portrait of Edwin Evans
© By kind permission of the Wyndham Lewis Memorial Trust

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Portrait of Edwin Evans 1922 - 1923

On Display Modern One

Edwin Evans (1874-1945) was a celebrated music critic. A group of his friends commissioned this portrait to honour his role in promoting modern music in Britain, and presented it to Evans at a dinner in January 1923. The painting was still unfinished since the subscribers had failed to raise the full amount promised to Lewis. Lewis continued to work on the painting after the presentation, but Evans, satisfied with its unfinished state, soon claimed it back. The squared pattern reveals Lewis’s method of work: he would make a pencil study, draw a grid over it, and then draw a similar grid onto the canvas. He could then transfer the composition with great precision by copying the individual squares.

Glossary Open


When an individual or organisation employs an artist to execute a particular project, the process and the resulting work are termed a ‘commission’.


The arrangement of different elements in a work of art.

Commission, Composition


  • Acc. No. GMA 1079
  • Medium Oil on canvas
  • Size 149.00 x 107.80 cm
  • Credit Purchased 1968