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Favourite Paintings 8: Berthe Morisot, La Lecture (Reading), 1888
This Impressionist essay on light, colour, and tranquillity features vivacious brush work; in taking art into everyday family life, it heralds art for all. Painter Berthe Marie Pauline Morisot Painting La Lecture (Reading) Year 1888 Media oil on canvas Dimensions 74.3 x 92.7 cm (29.25 x 36.5 in) Collection... Read more
Favourite Paintings 14: Artemisia Gentileschi, Allegory of Painting, c 1638-9
A distinctive presumed self-portrait of this exceptional woman painter, cropped close, from an unusual viewpoint, using chiaroscuro, colour, and the most amazing fabric textures. Painter Artemisia Gentileschi Painting Allegory of Painting (‘La Pittura’) Year c 1638-9 Media oil on panel Dimensions 98.6 x 75.2 cm (38.8 x 29.6 in)... Read more
Into the Light: Emma Lampert Cooper, the invisible wife
Known today only as the first wife of Colin Campbell Cooper, Emma Lampert Cooper (1855-1920) was as highly regarded as a painter, but since her death her works have all but vanished. Emma Lampert, as she was then, was born to a German immigrant leather tanner, in Nunda, New... Read more
Into the Light: Rosa Bonheur, animalière extraordinaire
No accounts of the painting of animals, nor of French painting in the nineteenth century, can omit one of the most famous animalières of all, and one of the leading women painters, Rosa Bonheur (1822–1899). Born as Marie-Rosalie Bonheur in Bordeaux, her father and uncles were established painters and... Read more
The Forgotten Pre-Raphaelite: Marie Spartali Stillman, 1 – to 1883
Now unfortunately overshadowed by Impressionism, the Pre-Raphaelite movement was a major influence in European painting in the middle and later years of the 1800s. The core of the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood was small and transient, but the movement and its periphery spread further, and lasted until the early twentieth century.... Read more
The Forgotten Pre-Raphaelite: Marie Spartali Stillman, 2 – 1884 to 1892
In the first article, I gave an account of the early life and work of Marie Spartali Stillman (1844–1927), up to her return to England after five years in Florence, in 1883. During that period she had made good advantage of her time in northern Italy, which had brought... Read more
The Forgotten Pre-Raphaelite: Marie Spartali Stillman, 3 – from 1892
In my previous article, I described the life and work of Marie Spartali Stillman (1844–1927) during some of her most active and productive years. This article completes my account. Late 1892 saw Marie’s step-daughter Bella married after a brief engagement to the Slade Professor of Fine Art at Cambridge... Read more
Into the Light: Susan Macdowell Eakins, more than the artist’s wife
Like many artists, Thomas Eakins (1844–1916) married another artist, Susan Hannah Macdowell (1851–1938), better known under her married name of Susan Macdowell Eakins. Like many artists’ wives, their lives, careers, and works have been largely forgotten. Indeed, several authoritative sources assert that “after her marriage, Susan Eakins gave up... Read more
Anna Lea Merritt: Art locked out
Some artists are known for just one or two of their works which happen to have been added to public collections. Anna Massey Lea Merritt (1844–1930) is a good example of a prolific woman painter who is known for a single painting, in the Tate in London, most of... Read more
Anna Alma-Tadema: An eye for detail
When writing about Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema, I mentioned that one of his daughters also became a professional artist, and promised to give an account of her life and work. Here it is. Lawrence Alma-Tadema (1836–1912), This is Our Corner (Portrait of Anna Alma Tadema (1867-1943) (front) and Laurense Alma... Read more