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Averil Burleigh ARWS (1882-1949)

Averil Mary Burleigh (née Dell), ARWS RI SWA (1882-1949)

The versatile art of the painter and illustrator, Averil Burleigh, is distinguished by its strong sense of design. Initially influenced by the Pre-Raphaelites and drawn to Mediaeval subject matter, she became increasingly known for her luminous temperas and watercolours.

Averil Burleigh was born Averil Dell in Hassocks, Sussex, in the third quarter of 1882, the third of five children of the upholsterer, Henry Dell, and his wife Hannah (née White), the daughter of an Essex miller and agricultural labourer. By 1891, Averil had moved with her family to West House, West Street, Ditchling, and by 1901 they had all settled at 27 St Michael’s Place, Brighton. By that date, her father was working as an auctioneer as well as an upholsterer. She studied at Brighton School of Art.

In 1904, Averil Dell married the artist, Charles H H Burleigh, in Brighton, and they soon settled at 7 Wilbury Crescent, Hove, a house that they designed for themselves, and which included a top floor studio.

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