Love and Marriage at Tate Britain



Couple by Lauren George
Couple by Lauren George


Love in The Tate Archive

Issue 14 of Tate Etc from autumn 2008 includes an article by Tishani Doshi. In it she describes what she discovered while exploring the correspondence in the Tate archive between Vanessa and Clive Bell prior to their marriage.

Vanessa Bell, was Virginia Woolf’s sister, and an artist in her own right, who initially rejected a marriage proposal from her future husband. After years of exchanging letters which included “a stubborn insistence on not wanting to “marry in the abstract””, her salutations suddenly changed from “Dear Mr Bell” into “My dearest Clive”. To read more about this see My dearest Clive…..Behind the curtain

Vanessa married Clive Bell in 1907 but both took lovers throughout their marriage. The couple had two sons. Their oldest son, Julian, died in the Spanish Civil War aged 29. Quentin Bell became an English art historian and author.  Vanessa had a daughter, Angelica, from an affair with Duncan Grant, whom Clive raised as his own child. Angelica grew up and married her father Duncan’s ex-lover, David Garnett.

Come and discover love and marriage in art with

Treasure Hunt in London’s

“Love and marriage at The Tate Britain”

Teams of 2 to 6 players get to unravel clues, solve puzzles and find the answers to the hunt questions and assignments. Explore the gallery and discover the collection. As always, the hunt ends at a nearby pub where we announce the results and award prizes to the winning team.



team of treasure hunters at Tate by Juliamaud
Team of treasure hunters at Tate


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