Saturday, May 9, 2009

Stanhope Alexander Forbes - A Fish Sale on a Cornish Beach

oil on canvas
City Art Gallery, Plymouth


Carolina said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Carolina said...

My feelings about this piece of art:

I am looking at the picture after researching the painter, and of course it has deepened it’s meaning for me. Forbes finished this paint only a year after he moved to Cornwall.
He had the wisdom and ability to recreate the impression of the light at this Cornish beach. The reflection of the water during the low tide is remarkable, combined with the different tones of grey in the sky. It transmits a certain level of sadness that is compensated for the contentment that can be read in the main characters’ expressions.

The sight of the beach is quite messy. Forbes has succeeded in inviting us inside the picture, where I can even sense the smell of fresh fish and salty air. I could tell that those ladies hands and faces must be worn out by the weather and seawater.

This realistic painter has captured, the locals’ sense of routine and their submission to it, as if it were their indubitable destiny. He lets us feel their satisfaction due to the acceptance of their fate and the certainty of their meaning in life.

I can tell by the postures of the three main characters, by their gestures and body language that they are used to this kind of life: hard working, yet pleasant. At the end of their day, they know that the feeling of fulfilment from their daily tasks will please God.