WALKER, Madelyn

1890 - 1970

As Ethel Madeline Walker, she was born at 'Dunorlan', 122 Woodbridge Road, Ipswich on 3 January 1890, daughter of James Frederic Walker [q.v.], a draper in Fore Street, Ipswich, later a commercial traveller in the petroleum trade, and his wife Lizzie Isabella née Mallett (1858-27 June 1930), who married at Museum Street Chapel, Ipswich on 19 November 1885. Madeline, as she was known in her younger years, studied at the Ipswich School of Art from 1903 under George Rushton [q.v.] and her exhibition entry at South Kensington Museum in July 1908 'design for an illuminated casket' was commended and later that year at the Ipswich High Street Gallery she won 1st prize for an 'illumination on vellum and leather'. In 1911, a 21 year old pupil teacher, living at 122 Woodbridge Road, Ipswich with her parents, 52 year old James Frederic and 53 year old Lizzie Isabella, with siblings Violet Maud 23 and Nora Gladys 16, both born at Ipswich. A teacher at Sheffield School of Art and as Madelyn Walker, she exhibited at the Howard Street Club, Sheffield in 1915 'chaste writing and illuminating' but was a member of the Ipswich Art Club 1919-1922 from 30 Anglesea Road, Ipswich, where she does not seem to have exhibited. In 1921, as Madelyn, elected to Craft Membership of the Society of Scribes and Illuminators at 14 Brook Street, London W., serving as Hon. Secretary 1923-1928, and studied with Edward Johnston (1872-1944) and William Graily Hewitt (1864-1952). One of her most important works was a sumptuously decorated copy of James Elroy Flecker's 'The Golden Journey to Samarkand' written by Madelyn Walker in 1929 and decorated by Joan Kingsford Wood some years later. Her other works included a copy of Browning's 'The Boy and the Angel' 1913 and in 1925 wrote out for him three poems by Alfred Noyes (1880-1958), 'Come down to Kew in Lilac Time', 'Sherwood' and 'Snow'. In the early 1930s, Madelyn entered a convent and in 1939, a Sister of Servant of God, living at The House of Prayer, Britwell Road, Burnham, Buckinghamshire and where she died on 2 November 1970. (Pioneers of Modern Calligraphy-The British Museum Quarterly, Vol. 33, No. 1/2 (Autumn, 1968).




Works by This Artist