There was nothing heroic about being an artist in Sheffield in the twenties and if you are underestimated your linocuts don't go into four figures. Anyone that knows prints of the period will know Beaumont as someone who was not a member of the Chorus (top) but displayed independance all along and stands out from the Grosvenor School students for his 'clarity and elegance' as the Sheffield Telegraph had it. (I also need to say that he never studied with Claude Flight at the school but obviously the influence is there - possibly too much so. I think it's one of the weaknesses of his prints).
These were the qualities that led hin into a career in design, first at the Royal Mail and then at Sainsbury's, in the fifties and sixties. He came up the hard but fairly common way for the times: evening classes at the local art school while he was working at the Telegraph. After serving in the Royal Naval Volunteer Reserve during the first war, he first taught himself etching before moving on to the linocuts, which he is best know for today. Eye-catching and modern as Sainsbury's packaging was during the sixties, they hardly compare with the kind of prints you see here.
Please note: There is a second post in December, 2012, that reviews the exhibition. It's also worth saying that I'm an independant writer not a curator.