Although much criticised for this role, Steer taught at the Slade for many years and was a friend of Sargent, Sickert and other influential artists. Eventually his stunning landscapes caught the mood of loss and of "Englishness" in the inter-war years and he became one of the most popular and admired artists in Britain.
This timely study of Steer, the first for twenty years, explores his importance to British art and charts the influence of the Impressionists, Turner, Constable and Gainsborough on his work. It is also a fascinating story of how a modest and unassuming man devoted himself to art, even in the face of increasing blindness, and became a leader of opinion through his painting.
Ysanne Holt lectures on the History of Art at the Newcastle College of Art and Design and at the University of Northumbria at Newcastle. She is an authority on twentieth century British art, especially at the Slade school.