Ivon Hitchens


Ivon Hitchens CBE (1893–1979) was a British painter, best known for his abstract, panoramic depictions of woodland landscapes near his home in West Sussex.


Born in London, Hitchens was the son of landscape artist Alfred Hitchens; who went onto study at the Royal Academy Schools from 1912-16, returning to study between 1918-19, following two years’ service in hospital supply during the First World War. Still not fully recovered from illness he suffered in his youth, he was declared unfit for active service in 1914.  


In 1922 he became a founding member of the Seven and Five Society, and in 1925 had his first solo exhibition at The Mayor Gallery, London. He was elected a member of the London Artists’ Association in 1929. 


Living in Hampstead throughout the 1920s and 30s, he became a part of The London Group of artists, which included Leon Kossoff, Barbara Hepworth, Henry Moore, Naum Gabo, Paul Nash and Ben Nicholson. Leaving London for Sussex in 1940 with his wife Mollie, after a bomb landed next door to his studio.


Hitchens would live out of a caravan and paint his surroundings for the remainder of his life, exhibiting with the Leicester Galleries from 1940-60, when he moved to the Waddington Galleries.


A retrospective of his work was exhibited at the British Pavilion in the 1956 Venice Biennale, organised by the British Council and at the Tate Gallery to mark his 70th birthday in 1963, arranged the the Arts Council.


Hitchens was created CBE in 1958. Today, his paintings are in the collections of the Tate Gallery in London, the National Galleries of Scotland in Edinburgh, and the Courtauld Institute in London, among others.