John Minton (1917-1957)

Minton was an English painter, illustrator, stage designer and teacher. He studied in France and began his career teaching in London, but he painted prolifically during this time. In addition to landscapes and portraits, he also built up a reputation as a book illustrator.

In the mid 1950’s, Minton found himself out of sync with the move to abstraction, and felt increasingly sidelined. He suffered psychological problems, self medicated with alcohol and in 1957 he committed suicide.

John Minton (1917-1957), Sha’arei Hessed, Jerusalem,


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Pencil, pen and ink and gouache on buff paper
10¾ x 10 ½ in (27 x 26.5 cm)
Inscribed with title

Collections: Martyn Goff, OBE CBE (1923-2015)

Sha’arei Hessed is a neighbourhood in central Jerusalem. Minton’s drawing was made in connection with his illustrations for Woodrow Wyatt’s article The Jews at Home, published in Tribune Magazine in 1951.

Martyn Goff, who probably acquired the drawing directly from Minton, was a friend of the artist from this period (see Frances Spalding Dance till the Stars come down 1991 p. 123). Goff was a bookseller and author and the man most responsible for establishing the Booker Literary Prize.

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