Drawing in

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The Painter’s family (detail)

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Another detail of The Painter’s family

Some time before I or any of us had even heard of hyyge, I had a short summer visit to Norway where I went to the National Gallery and strongly enjoyed the National bend for painting lots of pictures of people having breakfast. It’s very easy art to live with, and I found it immensely comforting. I particularly like this one for early winter with the lamplight on the faces, and the mix of snow, books and porridge.

 

The Angler

The Angler c.1912 by Sir William Orpen 1878-1931

I wonder if this William Orpen painting is currently on display in Tate Britain. It might not be in vogue enough for that trendiest of galleries, but it tells you so much about Edwardian England: the winged hat a knowing nod to Mercury and classical mythology, the trim hairstyle and tailoring of the still acceptably upper-class New Woman, the nostalgia for country pursuits and the echoes of baroque murals on family home ceilings in that dawn background… Also delightfully, delightfully pretty.

William Orpen, The Angler, 1912.

Laura Wheeler Waring

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Confident and dignified poses from these 1930s and 40s sitters,

Marian Anderson

a great reminder of the African-American middle class,

and also these defiant faces. Images via Pimterest, but the discovery via the Women’s Art Twitter feed.

Moody

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Then there was the bad weather. It would come in one day…We would have to shut the windows in the night against the rain and the cold wind would strip the leaves from the trees in the Place Contrescarpe. The leaves lay sodden in the rain and the wind drive the rain against the big green autobus at the terminal…

Hemingway – A Moveable Feast

Always a gamble whether September ushers in the start of 6 months like this, or a glorious burst of summer that runs till mid-October. Either way, I think Hemingway would have approved of this fellow, and I’m in the mood for his short, crunchy sentences.

Portrait of a gipsy, Israel Gonzalez de la Serna, 1925-1930

Glowing

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I saw this late work by Alma-Tadema (better known for his massive classical set pieces) over at Leighton House on a pouring wet day earlier this month. Leighton House itself is pretty stunning, with an “Arab Hall” inspired by Syria and Sicily and an entrance of deep peacock blue tiles, so the perfect setting for Alma-Tadema’s equally lush art.

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Rather nicely, the two artists actually knew each other and Leighton recommended his architect to Alms Tadema, when he bought Tissot’s house in St John’s Wood and decided to remodel it to include extra studios for his wife and each of his daughters. This exhibition’s well worth a trip, especially for the films showing how Alma Tadema’s art has influenced film depictions of Ancient Rome, and for a reconstruction of the “panel room”, where artistic visitors were asked to paint a contribution before leaving.

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photos of Leighton House from my visit.