As Summer makes a break for it, attempting to overthrow Spring in all her prettiness,
I have been enjoying "Summer in February".
Having heard of it in a recent post on Rosemary's blog, Where Five Valleys Meet I found it at our local library...
Set among the Edwardian era artistic community the Newlyn School in Cornwall, it is the tragic but true love story of a beautiful young artist, Florence, who had the misfortune to marry the wrong man, and another man who truly loved her.
A film version of 'Summer in February' has been released in England, and I hope it arrives at a theatre near me some time soon....
|Fletcher, Blandford, 'Evicted' 1887|
The very first painting acquired by the new Qld Art Gallery in 1896, and to this day one of its most popular works: 'Evicted' by Blandford Fletcher, an artist who was also associated with the Newlyn School.
Fletcher travelled regularly to France where he came in contact with the painter Jules Bastien-Lepage, whose romanticised rural scenes had a strong influence on Fletcher. He adapted this style to a British context.
Considered a fine example of Victorian social realism, 'Evicted' depicts a widow and her young daughter being forced from their home.
The painting has sentimental appeal, and relies on an emotional response in the viewer. It is an overcast Autumn day, as shown in the scattered brown leaves, and dull colours. This heightens the sense of loss and sadness. The sympathetic townsfolk look on but do not intervene. Central to the painting is the child, whose innocent but injured eyes stare straight out to the viewer. Behind her is a broken toy, which adds to the pathos. By their door stands the bailiff in his top-hat, having done his duty and achieved the required result.
One of the consequences of the Industrial Revolution was the increase in poverty and hardship faced by families, and Fletcher and other Victorian artists attempted to represent and bring attention to the plight of the social underclasses.
The painting is quite large, 123 cm x 185 cm, and the figures almost life-size.
This adds to the realism, and involvement of the viewer.
'Evicted' was exhibited at the Royal Academy, where it was much admired by British Prime Minister Gladstone.
It is nearly always on display at QAG, Brisbane, and when it is taken down for any length of time, enquiries are made as to its whereabouts.
And speaking of the gallery, the exhibition of Quilts from the V&A finished today, after a hugely successful run. I have never seen so many women of a certain age in the gallery all at once, and all having the best time.
I have been studying toy catalogues:
because a certain Little Bebe is turning one pretty soon...
And who's a clever little boy???
Grandparenthood is wonderful...
Have a great week, wherever you are.