EVENT - Clarence Bicknell in Private, 20th July 2019, Bordighera

Written by Marcus Bicknell on .

We are delighted to announce an event on Saturday 20th July 2019 in the Museo Bicknell, Bordighera, starting at 17h30. I have entitled it

Clarence Bicknell in Private.


  • Projection of the acclaimed 18-minute film The Marvels of Clarence Bicknell
    Musings from me, Marcus Bicknell, Clarence’s great grand nephew,
    With images from the family collection
    Question and answer session, drinks

The extraordinary events which celebrated the centenary of the death of Clarence Bicknell showed off his botany, his work on the rock engravings, his art and his role in Bordighera from 1878 till 1918. Maybe it is time now to delve into why he was such an interesting person… was Clarence a scientific giant or a man with a lisp who left his family and his church to be on the Riviera? … was he an English parson who spent the first 38 years of his life with men, or the grey-haired and wise gentleman who famously spent much of his time on the coast and in the mountains with women? Mrs Fanshawe Walker; landlady, his avowed “best friend”, companion or more? What was the Baroness von Taube for him? Who was Alice Campbell who allegedly was with him at his last moments at Casterino and was buried alongside him? Did Alice exist? If she did exist, why would Margaret Berry, Clarence’s niece and self-appointed moral guardian, have erased every mention of her from the records?

And there are other questions like what moved Clarence, what led him forward through life and what motivated him to create so many artworks and artefacts... 43,000 pieces in total in universities and museums across Europe? What was his private life like and how did he relax? Why did he invest so much energy and money into creating care homes, hospitals and museums? Where did the money come from and how did it last a lifetime? Did he find fulfilment in being a vegetarian, a pacifist and an Esperantist? Why did he come to Bordighera, and were the reasons similar to those which bring foreigners to settle in Bordighera even now?

Are you, tonight, walking in Clarence’s emotional footsteps?

Marcus Bicknell, Clarence’s great grand-nephew and one of the six researchers for the 2018 biography MARVELS: The Life of Clarence Bicknell by Valerie Lester who, like Marcus, shares Clarence’s genes, thinks the English speakers of Bordighera are ready for a more in-depth discussion of Clarence’s personality.

The event will start with a projection of the acclaimed 18-minute film The Marvels of Clarence Bicknell in the evocative visual style of French director Rémy Masséglia. The film is nominated at the St.Martin Vesubie Mountain Film Festival the day before this talk. Marcus will talk with some visual support to try to answer these questions and will then throw the floor open to your further questions, comments and (if you read the book in advance) disagreements… surely!


clarence bicknell in private july2019 flyer c

You can download this A4 flyer in pdf here

Place: Museo Bicknell, via Via Romana 39, Bordighera, IM-18012. +39 0184.263694

Date and time: 17h30 Saturday 20th July 2019

Entry is free of charge, but please say your coming using the "events" feature on our two Facebook pages www.facebook.com/clarencebicknell  and www.facebook.com/Friends-of-the-Riviera-363194587502450/

Refreshments: to be confirmed

Organised by: Friends of the Riviera and the Clarence Bicknell Association by kind permission and with the cooperation of the Istituto Internazionale di Studi Liguri / Museo Bicknell.

Buy MARVELS the book from the Museo Bicknell or Amico Libro, Via Vittorio Emanuele II, 30, Bordighera or at www.clarencebicknell.com  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


Marcus Bicknell, 14th June 2019

FaLang translation system by Faboba