It is with great sadness that Charleston has learned of the death of Anne Olivier Bell.
Not only was Anne [known to close friends as Olivier] Charleston’s President, she helped found The Charleston Trust in the 1980s and was an acknowledged expert on Bloomsbury and on Charleston’s original collection and interiors.
Anne Olivier Bell trained as an art historian at the Courtauld in the 1930s. She worked at the end of the war as part of a special international unit to repatriate works of art displaced by war. She first came to know Charleston in 1950 and in 1952 married Vanessa and Clive Bell’s son, Quentin. Then had three children and continued to visit Charleston regularly. She received honorary doctorates from Sussex and York Universities for her work editing the five volumes of Virginia Woolf’s diaries. In 2014 Anne Olivier Bell was awarded an MBE in the New Year’s Honours List for services to the arts and literature.
Her incredible contributions to Charleston and to the study of Bloomsbury remain a glorious memorial to her.
Informal reading and discussion group, exploring Bloomsbury texts and themes. First Sunday of every month.
CRESSIDA BELL talks to her sister, Virginia Nicholson, about Charleston, her design work and curating ‘In Colour.’