The premise behind Ruth Artmonsky's book is the simple fact that Jack Beddington (1893-1959) has so often featured in the footnotes of other books, yet hitherto has never been accorded a book of his own. Beddington is best known for two phases in his life - his period as Publicity Director for Shell in the 1930s, and as Head of Films for the Ministry of Information during WW2. At Shell, he fostered the early careers of British artists by commissioning them to produce artwork for large posters which used to adorn the sides of Shell lorries, and which are now highly sought after; artists included Paul Nash, Graham Sutherland, McKnight Kauffer etc. He was also instrumental in establishing, with a young John Betjeman, the 'Shell Guides' to English counties, a series which long outlived Beddington himself.
The Footnote Man