Sunday, January 30, 2011

Taxing Visions: Financial Episodes in Late 19th-Century American Art

American obviously but important and fascinating:

A new exhibition interprets the economic depression of the late 19th century

Jan. 29, 2011–May 30, 2011
Virginia Steele Scott Galleries of American Art, Susan and Stephen Chandler Wing

By the by, later this year:

“The Lure of Myth: British Drawings from The Huntington’s Art Collections”

Nov. 6, 2010 – Mar. 7, 2011
Huntington Art Gallery, Works on Paper Room

Subjects drawn from Greek and Roman mythology have appealed to artists for many centuries. Often dealing with epic struggles, feats of courage, or amorous adventures, mythological stories were appreciated for their originality, heroic characters, and drama. This small exhibition features the work of British artists of the 18th and 19th centuries who experimented with these subjects, including James Thornhill, Thomas Gainsborough, Henry Fuseli, and Richard Dadd. It complements the exhibition “Beauty and Power: Renaissance and Baroque Bronzes from the Peter Marino Collection,” which includes many examples of mythological subjects in sculpture

Seeing the Swans

J Walters - View of Ilfracombe, Devon, 1842

Marianne North Victorian botanic art Gallery

Marianne North (born 1830) was the daughter of Frederick North, MP. She was a talented artist with a fascination for travel, who concentrated on painting flowers in their natural habitats. She travelled to Canada and the United States, the Caribbean, Brazil, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, and throughout Asia, painting plants, animals and landscapes as she went. Following a successful exhibition of her work in 1879, Marianne offered her paintings as a gift to Kew. The Gallery is unique and extraordinary. It is thought to be the only permanent solo exhibition in the country by a female artist and its striking originality is in its unique pre-Aesthetic hanging style. The Gallery was designed by Marianne's friend James Fergusson, an architectural historian, whose theories on the illumination of Greek temples were exemplified in his design of the Gallery. Marianne arranged for a dado of exotic woods to be put below the pictures, and decorated the doors and lintels herself, including painting a coffee bush over one doorway and tea plant over another as a gentle reference to her original wish that refreshments should be served in the Gallery. The 120-year old gallery is now deteriorating rapidly and in need of major restoration. Some walls are not sound, the roof is badly patched and as a consequence there are damp areas leading to mould and fungus outbreak - this is all a serious threat to the paintings. Less than 6% of Kew's audience visits the Gallery today, but Kew hope to change that. The total cost of restoring the Gallery, surveying and conserving the paintings and improving access is £3.7 million - they are hoping that the HLF will cover half the cost. To encourage this wonderful project, the Trust offered a grant of £5,000 towards restoring decoration around the doorcases. In February 2009, members of HOLT's society of Friends visited the building to see how work was progressing. The building was re-opened in late 2009.

(Sir) George Clausen - An Old Woman

Robert Gallon - A Village Scene

William Blandford Fletcher - King John's Bridge - Tewkesbury

People were poorer, and had not the comforts, amusements or knowledge we have today, but they were happier.

Flora Thompson
Lark Rise to Candleford

Myles Birket Foster - The Country Inn

Thursday, January 27, 2011

East Ham Palace Theatre 1908

From the brilliantly useful archive of the East End early theatre

Lady Ranfurly's sitting room - New Zealand

Edmund George Warren - Harvest

Price Realized £18,750

signed 'Edmund G Warren' (lower right)
pencil and watercolour with gum arabic heightened with bodycolour
19½ x 29¾ in. (49.5 x 75.5 cm.)

A member of the New Watercolour Society, Warren was one of the first landscape painters to embrace the Pre-Raphaelite principles of colour, a keen observation from nature and painstaking detail in his landscape watercolours. Warren's shady groves and sunlit cornfields were among the New Society's highest priced exhibits. The Athenaeum said of Warren's offerings to the New Watercolour Society Exhibition of 1860 'But the old order changeth, yielding place to the new - and the ever whirling wheel of mutability shook the steadfast foundations of this association two years ago, but suddenly casting among them a painter, a young man by the name of Warren - ... a painter who painted what he saw'.

John Linnell - Gravel pits of Kensington, 1811-1812

John Linnell - The Noonday Rest

John Linnell - The Harvest Cradle

George Cole - Harvest Timw

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Fleet Street

Paris, rue Galande, 1888

William Lee Hankey - The Village Gossip 1900

Idealised rural village scenes were popular during Victorian times. William Lee Hankey here gives a little drama, with the young woman and child isolated from the main group. The title of the work invites the viewer to guess what they are saying about her.

During the early 1900s Hankey moved to France where he painted peasant subjects almost exclusively. He was influenced by the French artist Bastien-Lepage (1848-1884), who painted scenes of French peasant life in an idealised realist manner. Lee-Hankey was also a successful printmaker in the early 1900s, with many of his rural subjects being produced as prints.

Born in Chester, England, Hankey studied at the Chester School of Art, the Royal College of Art, South Kensington, and in Paris. Back in London he began exhibiting at the Royal Academy in 1896. Lee Hankey was President of the Royal Sketch Club from 1902 to 1904. On active service during World War I, he served with the Artists’ Rifles in Flanders in 1915.

Thomas Shotter Boys - Children on a Beach

John Atkinson Grimshaw - A Summer Noon, old farmstead, Wharfedale

John Atkinson Grimshaw - A Moonlit Lane, with two lovers by a gate