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The death of the sculptor Henri Gaudier-Brzeska on the Western Front in 1915 aged twenty three turned him into a legend. Like John Keats or Rupert Brooke, he epitomises youthful brilliance prematurely extinguished.
Gaudier was one of the leading figures of early Modernism, a founder of the Vorticist movement, and part of that circle of artists and writers in Edwardian London which included Ezra Pound, Wyndham Lewis, T.E. Hulme, Jacob Epstein, and Edward Wadsworth. He was uncompromising in his devotion both to his art and to the woman who shared his life - Zofia Brzeska, a Polish woman nearly twenty years his senior whose name he took and who passed in public for his sister, in private for an uneasy combination of lover and mother. This major biography - the most fully-rounded, richly detailed to date - includes sensitive descriptions of many of Gaudier's most important sculptures and drawings, and offers a vivid picture of this short but astonishingly prolific and influential life....