The first edition of the supplements to the Charleston Bulletin in their original format.
In the summer of 1923 Virginia Woolf’s nephews, Quentin and Julian Bell, started a family newspaper, The Charleston Bulletin. Quentin decided to ask his aunt Virginia for a contribution: ‘it seemed stupid to have a real author so close at hand and not have her contribute.’
Woolf joined forces with Quentin, and from 1923 until 1927 they created fully-fledged booklets of stories and drawings that were presented as Supplements. Written or dictated by Woolf and illustrated by Quentin, these Supplements present a unique collaboration between the novelist during her most prolific years and the child-painter. In Virginia Woolf, Quentin Bell not only found a professional author and an experienced journalist, but, above all, a close companion and conspirator who shared his irreverence and mischievous sense of humour. The Supplements are transcribed in full alongside around 40 of Bell’s original illustrations. Designed to tease the adults, they portray Bloomsbury eccentricities along with the foibles and mishaps of the residents and visitors at Charleston. This is the first time the Supplements have been published since they were first written and will therefore be welcomed by admirers of Woolf and her circle.
Claudia Olk is Chair of English and Comparative Literature at the Freie Universitat Berlin.