17 May, 2013
The 2013 London Library Life in Literature Award, supported by Mayfair bookshop Heywood Hill, has been awarded to Sir John Richardson in recognition of his extraordinary contribution to the field of art history.
The theme of the 2013 award was art history Sir John Richardson’s magisterial biography of Picasso, of which Volume Four is forthcoming, has won widespread acclaim for the rigour of its scholarship, the lucidity of its prose and the sharpness of its insight into possibly the most important artist of the 20th century.
Sir John has also contributed to Vanity Fair and The New Yorker, published works on Edouard Manet, Juan Gris and the art historian Douglas Cooper, been a Slade Professor of Art at the University of Oxford (1995-6) and curated Picasso exhibitions in London and New York. He was appointed Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire (KBE) in the 2012 New Year Honours for services to art.
Sir Tom Stoppard, President of The London Library, said ‘As a writer, biographer and art historian, Sir John Richardson has made vivid to readers not only the story of Picasso but the cultural significance of an entire era. Sir John’s decades of research have brought to life, in exquisitely energetic prose, an artistic moment which shaped all that came after it. That he has remained so active in the wider world of art throughout his career makes his literary achievements all the more remarkable.’
Nicky Dunne, Chairman of Heywood Hill, said ‘Sir John is a literary titan and his work on Picasso is one of the great achievements of twentieth century biography. At Heywood Hill we salute him as a writer of outstanding abilities and one who is richly deserving of this wonderful award.’