John Mcewen com­ments on Ju­lia Wor­swick

Country Life Every Week - - My Favourite Painting Kit Hesketh-harvey -

This pic­ture, signed ‘Boris Pas­toukho, Paris, 1933–4’, to­day hangs in the Read­ing Room, which opens off to the left of the Foyer (the main tea room) at Clar­idge’s. The artist was a White Rus­sian, ex­iled by the Red Revo­lu­tion, with a life story as in­com­plete as his painted sig­na­ture. his work, which can be had at auc­tion, ap­pears un­der a num­ber of spellings: Pas­toukhoff, Pas­tu­choff, Pas­tukov. his sub­jects are por­traits, saucy nudes, street scenes and flow­ers, close-up or ar­ranged in vases. They fetch in the low thou­sands.

Pas­toukhoff was born and be­gan his art ed­u­ca­tion in Kiev and grad­u­ated at Za­greb’s Acad­emy of Fine Arts in 1920. he es­tab­lished him­self in Yu­goslavia as a por­traitist of note, gain­ing com­mis­sions from King Alexan­der and others of the royal fam­ily. in 1930, he set­tled in Paris, like many White Rus­sians, and ex­hib­ited at the sa­lon des Tui­leries, as well as hav­ing solo shows in a num­ber of com­mer­cial gal­leries.

he ex­hib­ited in Eng­land at the Royal Acad­emy and the Royal so­ci­ety of Por­trait Painters as well as in italy, spain and Ecuador. Among mu­se­ums that have his work is the Brook­lyn Mu­seum of Fine Arts, New York.

This pic­ture is of his wife, Ju­lia Wor­swick, born Ju­lia Pavlovna Dra­gunova in sébastopol in 1903 and also an artist. she es­caped Rus­sia and be­came his pupil in Paris, where she later ex­hib­ited along­side Derain and Van Don­gen. she died in Lon­don in 1976. how the por­trait came to be in Clar­idge’s is not cer­tain, but Pas­toukhoff, a fre­quent guest, was known to set­tle his ho­tel bills not with money, but with his paint­ings.

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