Following the addition of a rare bust of artist Duncan Grant by sculptor Stephen Tomlin to Charleston’s collection in February 2020, Abbott and Holder have commissioned an edition of 15 bronzes cast from the original by Bronze Age London, priced at £6,000 (+VAT). 15% of each sale will be donated to The Charleston Trust, the charity which runs Charleston and has been badly affected by the Covid-19 pandemic.
The bust of Duncan Grant illustrates the complicated personal relationships within the Bloomsbury group. It was commissioned by David Garnett who was Grant’s lover at Charleston during World War One, and paid for by John Maynard Keynes, also a resident of Charleston who had been Grant’s lover c.1909. Tomlin was also romantically involved with Garnett, Grant and his then lover Angus Davidson. Another of Grant’s lover’s, Eddie Sackville-West became infatuated with Tomlin, buying the original plaster of Grant’s bust.
Two copies were cast in bronze at Giovanni Fiorini’s Foundry in Battersea, both Garnett and Keynes keeping the busts in their collections for the remainder of their lives. Keynes’ cast was bequeathed by his nephew, Milo Keynes, to the National Portrait Gallery in 2010.