Trevelyan travelled widely as a young man and later in life, he, and his wife, the artist Mary Fedden, shared this passion for travel. As the war-dominated years receded, many of their friends re-opened homes around the world and the Trevelyans were regular house guests in exotic locations such as Greece, Malta, Crete and Italy. As Julian’s career developed during the 80s, his work took him on major excursions to, amongst others, Russia, Africa and the USA. During these ‘working holiday’s Julian would fill notebooks and sketches with material and inspiration for work in the months and years to come. Titles of his etchings read like extracts from travel brochures - Mont Ventoux, Etruruia, Gozo, Gharb, Ischia, Mt Athos and Mt Sinai.
Between 1970 and 1984, these working holidays triggered entire suites of etchings. In the preface to his Catalogue Raisonne, Mary describes Julian’s quick responses to new experiences ‘He constantly drew on the people and places visited and he set down whatever caught his eye. He had the ability to capture the essence of a place …. Africa, India, Russia, France, Malta, Italy … and what he saw, thought and felt was immediately translated into prints and paintings which reflected the very smell of where he had drawn inspiration’. We share the artist’s joy in the landscapes he stumbles across and the customs encountered. The people and animals are recorded with a charm and simplicity of design generally alighting on the things that captivated Trevelyan: the holy cattle; a man ploughing with buffalo; steam trains and bicycles; a horse and cart; shoeing oxen.
‘Travels: An Exhibition of Etchings’ presents an exciting opportunity for collectors of Trevelyan’s prints as it includes rare examples of his work and prints directly from the Artist’s Estate (which Bohun Gallery has handled since the artist’s death). One of the finest is ‘Game Park’ from the Africa Suite of 1966 and Camel Corps of 1972. There is an early pastoral Tuscan scene of 1957 and two of the most highly sought after etchings from the American Suite ‘Adultery with Secretaries’ and ‘Avenue of the Americas’. The exhibition also includes popular and rarely seen images from the Florence Suite, the Africa Suite and the Provencal Suite.