Anna Kavan (1901-1968) was a British writer and artist. She began publishing novels under her married name Helen Ferguson in 1929, and in 1940 began publishing under the name Anna Kavan (one of her own fictional characters). Her writing was often innovative and experimental, influenced by her severe depression and long-term heroin addiction. Other significant writers including Brian Aldiss, J.G.Ballard, Doris Lessing, Anais Nin and Jean Rhys have admired Anna Kavan's distinctive style, and she continues to inspire readers, writers and artists today.
Anna Kavan at Bethlem Museum of the Mind
See Anna Kavan's portrait of her psychiatrist and close friend Dr Bluth on permanent display at Bethlem Museum of the Mind. For visiting times and more information see Museum of the Mind. In February 2016 the museum will also be exhibiting Kavan's painting of her own fictional character Luz, and Victoria Walker will be speaking about 'Anna Kavan's Fictional Worlds' at 2pm on 26 March 2016. To book see here.