Extensions of Lawrence’s Women in Love into Painting and Music
D. H. Lawrence considered that art was, to some extent, independent of its medium: painting and music and literature are various ways of doing the same thing. In his novel Kangaroo he argues for a vision of literature as a sort of wireless telegraphy between author and reader, a notion that dismisses the importance of the medium through which the communication is transmitted. The painters and sculptors depicted in his novels are good or vicious, effective or ineffective, in exactly the same way that a writer might be: just as the painter Paul Morel in the autobiographical novel Sons and Lovers is clearly a transposition of Lawrence himself, so other media easily operate as transpositions of literature. I look at the artist-figures in Lawrence’s novels, especially Women and Love, and at Lawrence’s extremely detailed responses, in his letters, to the music of Philip Heseltine and to the paintings of Mark Gertler and Duncan Grant. (Many examples of painting and music will seen and heard.). Finally I will discussing Lawrence’s own paintings as attempts to mediate between his interest in abstract art (particularly Grant’s) and his insistence on concrete particularity as developed in his theoretical writing on the novel, as well as in the novels themselves.