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John Randall Bratby

(1928-1992), Painter and writer; Editor-in-chief of Art Quarterly

Sitter in 25 portraits
Artist of 3 portraits
Bratby studied at the Royal College of Art (1951-54), and it was for his generation of RCA students that David Sylvester coined the phrase 'Kitchen Sink', to describe the realism of their art. In 1956 he was included in the British Pavilion at the Venice Biennale, and in 1957 won first prize in the Junior Section of the John Moores Liverpool exhibition. Bratby's vigorous realism with its debt to Van Gogh and Soutine went out of fashion in a time of Abstract Expressionism and Pop Art in the 60s, during which he wrote the semi-autobiographical Breakdown (1960). In the 1970s he made it his task to paint portraits of 'names', from tycoons and businessmen to television stars. He became a Royal Academician in 1971.

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John Randall Bratby, by Lord Snowdon - NPG P797(7)

John Randall Bratby

by Lord Snowdon
bromide print
NPG P797(7)

John Randall Bratby with his portrait of Lord Pakenham's daughter, by Unknown photographer - NPG x196116

John Randall Bratby with his portrait of Lord Pakenham's daughter

by Unknown photographer
gelatin silver print, 3 February 1959
NPG x196116

Jean Esme Oregon Cooke; John Randall Bratby, by Lewis Morley - NPG x125155

Jean Esme Oregon Cooke; John Randall Bratby

by Lewis Morley
toned bromide print, 1960s
NPG x125155

John Randall Bratby, by J.S. Lewinski - NPG x13710

John Randall Bratby

by J.S. Lewinski
bromide print on card mount, 1963
NPG x13710

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23 August 2015, 22:39

The painter Jean Cooke was the artist's first wife: their son together David, also appears in a family portrait.