Caroline Blackwood was born into the Guinness family in 1931, the daughter of the 4th Marquess and Marchioness of Dufferin and Ava. Brought up on the ancestral estate in Northern Ireland, Blackwood moved easily among the Anglo-Irish aristocracy, the Soho bohemians of past-war England and the liberal intelligentsia of 1960s New York. She was on intimate terms with some of the most celebrated artists and writers of her time.
An unpredictable beauty known for her wit and her courage, she has been called a muse to genius. But her marriages to three brilliant men - the painter Lucian Freud, the composer Israel Citkowitz, and the poet Robert Lowell - were as troubled as they were inspiring.
Blackwood herself was a serious and original writer. Arguably her best book, 'Great Granny Webster' described the comic terrors of her upbringing in Northern Ireland, and was shortlisted for the Booker Prize. She was not only an inspirer: her third husband Robert Lowell, with whom she was involved for seven years, described her as "a mermaid who dines upon the bones of her winded lovers".
Caroline died of cancer on St Valentine's Day, 1996 at the age of sixty-four.
- Publication Date:
- 01 / 09 / 2001
- 153 x 234mm