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Sir Francis Rose

Francis Rose (1909-1979), heir to a Scottish baronetcy, was born in England, but brought up in the South of France. He lived in Paris between 1929 and 1936, where he studied with Francis Picabia and José Maria Sert and worked on set designs for Diaghilev's Ballets Russes. Rose painted in Brittany with Christopher Wood in 1929. In 1930, Rose shared his first exhibition with Salvador Dalí.

In 1931, Rose was introduced to Gertrude Stein who became his patron and friend, and to her partner, Alice B. Toklas (he later illustrated The Alice B. Toklas Cookbook). He travelled extensively in the 1930s and exhibited in Paris, London and New York. Rose continued to exhibit in London and Paris in the 1950s and 1960s, with a major retrospective in London and Brighton in 1966. In 1961, Rose published his memoir, Saying Life; and in 1972, made a brief appearance as 'Lord Chaos' in Kenneth Anger's film Lucifer Rising.

England & Co held Sir Francis Rose – A Retrospective in 1988. In 2012, his painting, Hommage à Gertrude Stein, was included in the exhibition, The Steins Collect: Matisse, Picasso and the Parisian Avant Garde, which traveled from San Francisco MOMA to the Grand Palais, Paris and the Metropolitan Museum, New York. His work is represented in the Yale University Art Gallery (Stein-Toklas Collection), the Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art, Hartford, the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, and the British Museum.

England & Co hold a collection of works by Sir Francis Rose, with selected examples illustrated here. A very few copies are available for sale of the first edition of Saying Life – The Memoirs of Sir Francis Rose (1961), please email the gallery for details.


Drawings & works on paper

The Reds are really not bad sorts?  - Details

The Reds are really not bad sorts? 1936
22 x 17.5 inches
Gouache on paper.

Untitled - Details

Untitled (Surrealist composition) 1932
13 x 9 inches
Ink on paper.

Costume and set design for 'The Sphinx'  - Details

Costume and set design for 'The Sphinx' 1934
9.5 x 8.25 inches
Gouache on paper.

Portrait of Picasso (ii)  - Details

Portrait of Picasso (ii) 6.5 x 5.5 inches c 1949

Mixed media on paper.