Website last updated: 18-5-2017

9 JUNE 2016
THE LIFE OF RICHARD CHOPPING (BIOGRAPHY)

By: FSWL team
Published:
2016-06-20
Publication of The Visitors' Book: In Francis Bacon's Shadow: The Lives of Richard Chopping and Denis Wirth-Miller. With an extraordinary supporting cast including Lucian Freud and Francis Bacon, this is the untold story of two of the most fascinating figures to emerge from the turbulent world of post-war British art.

Denis Wirth-Miller and Richard Chopping (best known for painting the dust jackets to nine of Ian Fleming’s James Bond novels) were a couple at the heart of the mid-twentieth century art world, with the visitors' book of the Essex townhouse they shared from 1945 until 2008 painting them as Zeligs of British society. The names recorded inside make up an astonishing supporting cast - from Francis Bacon to Lucian Freud to Randolph Churchill to John Minton. Successful artists, although not household names themselves, writing Dicky and Denis off as just footnotes in history would be a mistake.

After Denis's death in 2010, Jon Lys Turner, one of two executors of the couple's estate, came into possession of an extraordinary archive of letters, works of art and symbolically loaded ephemera the two had collected since they met in the 1930s. It is no exaggeration to state that this archive represents a missing link in British art history - the wealth of new biographical information disclosed about Francis Bacon, for example, is truly staggering.

The Visitors' Book is both an extraordinary insight into the minutiae of Dicky and Denis's life together and what it meant to be gay in pre-Wolfenden Britain, as well as a pocket social history of the era and a unique perspective into mid-twentieth century art. With reams of previously unseen material, this is a fascinating and unique opportunity to delve into post-war Britain.

Reviews:
>Indepediente (19-6-2016)
>Spectator (11-6-2016)
>The Times (25-6-2016)

Book details:
Hardcover: 400 pages
Publisher: Constable & Robinson (a division of Little Brown)
Language: English
ISBN-10: 147212166X
ISBN-13: 978-1472121660
Dimensions: 23.8 x 3.7 x 16.5 cm

About the author:
Jon Lys Turner first met Dicky Chopping in 1981, shortly after beginning his Masters degree at the Royal College of Art. The pair developed a close friendship that would last until Dicky's death in 2008. Jon has worked at the top end of the UK design industry ever since completing his Masters, and has been creative director to some of the world's largest brands.

Editor's note:
Richard Chopping provided the artwork for the original dust jackets to From Russia With Love (1957), Goldfinger (1959), For Your Eyes Only (1960), Thunderball (1961), The Spy Who Loved Me (1962), On Her Majesty's Secret Service (1963), You Only Live Twice (1964), The Man with the Golden Gun (1965) and Octopussy and The Living Daylights (1966).

Photo above:
The cover for The Visitors' Book: In Francis Bacon's Shadow: The Lives of Richard Chopping and Denis Wirth-Miller. Copyright © 2016 Constable & Robinson. All rights reserved.

Order the hardcover edition of The Lives of Richard Chopping and Denis Wirth-Miller from Amazon:
www.amazon.co.uk/exec/obidos/ASIN/147212166X/fromswedenwit-21/
#bond_related

All information, text and graphics (unless otherwise stated) on this website are protected by copyright law. Please contact us to use anything.

This website is not in any way endorsed by EON Productions Ltd, Danjaq, Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer, Sony Pictures, United Artists, Ian Fleming Publications, or any other James Bond copyright holders. It is an independently run non-profit website from a personal basis in spare time.

James Bond film images © 1962 - 2015 EON Productions Ltd, Danjaq LLC, MGM, Sony Pictures and United Artists Cooperation

James Bond book covers © 1953 - 2017 Ian Fleming Publications and Glidrose Productions.

Managing Editor: Anders Frejdh