Tuesday, 9 September 2008

Some contemporary artists

Wei Dong (Chinese, b.1968)

"Traveller no.1" 2002

"Souvenir no.1" 2003

Ram Kumar
(Indian, b.1924)

"New Zealand" 1999

"Summer Landscape" 1988

Arthur Tress (American, b.1940)

"Child and Flood Dream" 1970

"Girl collecting Goldfish, France" 1974

Masami Teraoka (Japanese, b.1936)

"McDonald's Hamburgers invading Japan (Self Portrait)" 1980

John Bellany (Scottish, b.1942)


Andre Brasilier (French, b.1929)

"Sous bois" 1997

William Bailey (American, b.1930)

"Mercatale Still Life" 1981

Y.Z. Kami (Iranian, b.1962)

"Untitled (Jorge)" 1999-2000

"Untitled" 2007

Leiko Ikemura (Japanese, b.1951)

"Bathing in dark blue" 2002

Ernst Oscar Albrecht (1895-??)

Esrnst Oscar Albrecht - "Schwarzer Dreimaster (Black Three-Mast)" 1924

Monday, 8 September 2008

Sacha Moldovan (1901-82)

"Autumn Walk" 1955

"Chateau in the Woods" 1964

"Evelyn on Sunday"

"Red roof cottages"

"Russian Village"

"Woman knitting"

"Still life" 1961

"Still life with pears on a stool" 1955

"Still life with white vase"


"The Walk" 1958

Sunday, 7 September 2008

Matija Jama (1872-1947)

"Bridge over the River Dobra" 1907

"Quarry" 1907

"Willows" 1909


Short essay and slideshow
Article on Slovene early Modernism

Doris and Anna Zinkeisen

Doris Zinkeisen, photographed in 1929 by Harold Pierce Cazneaux

Doris Clare Zinkeisen (1898-1991) was a painter, illustrator, constume and theatrical designer and commercial artist. She and her sister Anna (1901-1976) both studied at Harrow School of Art then both won Scholarships to the Royal Academy schools in 1917. In London they shared a studio and during the 1920's and 30's both embarked on a wide variety of artistic projects including costume, poster and advertisement design, mural painting and traditional painting. Doris married in 1927 and by 1929 had exhibited at The Royal Academy and won medals at the Paris Salon. Anna won a silver medal at the Salon of 1926. In 1936 Doris and Anna contributed murals to the RMS Queen Mary (Doris is seen, right, painting part of a 1000 ft square mural in the Verandah Grill of the QM on the theme of "entertainment") and in 1940 to the RMS Queen Elizabeth. Their lifestlye is reflected in their art, a mixture of society portraiture, animal portraiture including horses and their riders, and weak genre scenes set in the parks of London and Paris showing women in beautiful gowns taking tea, walking their dogs and riding horses.

Doris Zinkeisen - "Self Portrait"

Doris Zinkeisen - "Corner of the Cafe Royal"

Despite their respective successes with painting and graphic art it was Doris that rose to major prominence during this period, for her costume design. Although she only worked on a handful of films, all of them are now regarded as British classics of the era and Doris is today best remembered for her work on these films. They included Bitter Sweet, Peg of Old Drury, Victoria the Great and the 1936 American screen version of Show Boat. She worked extensively on theatre productions with Noel Coward.

Doris Zinkeisen - "The Rehearsal"

Doris Zinkeisen - "Afternoon Promenade"

In 1941 both sisters were recruited as official war artists for the North West Europe Commission of the Joint War Organisation of the British Red Cross Society and the Order of St John. Early on in the war they worked as auxilliary nurses in St. Mary's hospital, Paddington. During this period they would work in the mornings then spend the afternoons painting in a disused operating theatre, recording the events of the day. Anna worked during this period on an extensive and detailed studies of injured and diseased patients whose value to the medical profession are acknowledged today.

Anna Zinkeisen - "St Mary's by Candlelight"

The full extent of Anna's work during the Second World War is unclear, but by the middle of the 1940's it is known that Doris was touring Belgium, France and Germany in her capacity as war artist. In 1945 she arrived at Belsen Concentration Camp immediately after it's liberation, in time to document the movement of 28,000 former inmates, attempts to care for and rehabilitate them, and the aftermath of the operation in which 13,000 of them who were beyond help died.

Doris Zinkeisen - "Belsen, April 1945"

Doris later wrote that "the shock of Belsen was never to be forgotten." It is testament to her versatility as an artist that she was able to produce work based on the things she had seen. Her palette had gradually darkened from the pastel pinks and blues in her park scenes of the 20's and 30's, becoming grimmer and more washed out towards the end of the 30's. In her war paintings she communicates in the muted greys, browns and ochres of her contemporaries such as Eric Ravilious and Stanley Spencer. Her 1945 paintings seem almost dead - full of black, grey and brown.

Doris Zinkeisen - "Human Laundry (Belsen)"

Doris was tortured for the rest of her life by her experiences at Belsen. Her son described the "heart rendrending" agony of the letters she wrote to her husband while working at the camp. She confided to her family that the sights she had seen had been terrible, but it was the smell of the place that had stayed with her. After the war she returned to London and resumed her work as a theatrical designer, albeit on a lesser scale, until 1972. She also occasionally exhibiting her paintings. She died in 1991.

Doris photographed in 1990 by Lucinda Douglas-Menzies

I have been able to find little of Anna's activities after the Second World War. Her daughter is the reknowned portrait painter Julia Heseltine (who's portrait by Anna Zinkeisen is shown below.) Doris' daughter's were the book illustrators Janet and Anne Graham Johnstone.

A small selection of the Zinkeisen sister's war work can be seen by searching the online collection of the Imperial War Museum. I imagine the bulk of their work from this period today resides in government collections, their other works sell regularly at auction in the low thousands. Their work is scarce and remains relatively unchampioned.

Doris Zinkeisen - "Peggy Woffington"

Doris Zinkeisen - "Industrial Power"

Anna Zinkeisen - "Portrait of Consuela Kennedy" 1937

Anna Zinkeisen - "Dovercourt" Lithograph, 1933.

Anna Zinkeisen - "Portrait of Julia Heseltine"

Doris Zinkeisen - "Flaming Sword of Industry - Planning for continuity of work"

Anna Zinkeisen - "Crocus Time" Lithograph, 1934

Saturday, 6 September 2008

Adalbert Franz Seligmann (1862-1945)

"Theodor Billroth Operating" 1890

Billroth was an important and influential pioneer in the field of abdominal surgery, close friend of Brahms, and one of the first musicians to attempt a scientific analysis of musicality. Little is known of the artist, but his name is saved from obscurity by this arresting picture of a hugely distinguished surgeon at work.

Friday, 5 September 2008

Christopher Wood (1901-1930)

"Street in Paris" 1926

"Nude with Tulips" 1926

"Landscape near Vence" 1927

"Cottages in Cornwall" 1928

"Church and Market, Brittany" 1930

"Buildings at Passy, Paris" 1927

"Christopher Wood was born in Knowsley, near Liverpool on 7 April 1901, the son of Mrs Clare and Dr Lucius Wood, a GP. At fourteen, Wood began to draw during recuperation from septicaemia, and went on to study architecture briefly at Liverpool University (1919-20). In London in 1920, the French collector Alphonse Kahn invited him to Paris, where Wood studied drawing at the Académie Julian in 1921. He entered effortlessly into fashionable artistic circles, meeting Augustus John and the Chilean diplomat Antonio de Gandarillas, with whom he began to live. As well as providing financial support, Gandarillas introduced Wood to Picasso, Georges Auric and Jean Cocteau, and to the use of opium. Although his painting was regarded as charmingly untutored, he learnt from these acquaintances, especially adopting the elegant line of Cocteau's drawings.

By 1926 Wood was in a position to make designs for Romeo and Juliet for Diaghilev's Ballets Russes. When these designs were abandoned at the last moment, he concentrated on England, becoming a member of the London Group (1926)and the Seven and Five Society (1926-30). He exhibited with Ben and Winifred Nicholson at the Beaux Arts Gallery (April-May 1927), becoming close to them personally and artistically. In particular, Winifred was supportive in the aftermath of his failed elopement with the painter and heiress Meraud Guinness. He painted with the Nicholsons in Cumberland and Cornwall in 1928. On a trip to St Ives, he and Ben Nicholson encountered the fisherman painter Alfred Wallis, whose work answered a shared interest in 'primitive' expression and helped Wood to establish a personal style. A solo exhibition at Tooth's Gallery (April 1929) was followed by an exhibition with Nicholson at the Galerie Bernheim in Paris (May 1930), in which Wood showed paintings made in Brittany in 1929. The results of a second stay in Brittany (June-July 1930) were intended to open the Wertheim Gallery in London in October. Travelling with his paintings, Wood met his mother in Salisbury on 21 August 1930. Possibly believing himself pursued (an effect of withdrawal from opium), he threw himself under the London train. In deference to his mother, his death was often subsequently described as accidental. Posthumous exhibitions were held at the Wertheim Gallery (Feb. 1931) and the Lefevre Galleries (1932). In 1938 Wood's paintings were included in the British pavilion at the Venice Biennale. In the same year a major exhibition was organised by the Redfern Gallery at the New Burlington Galleries, which attempted to re-unite Wood's complete works, and gave impetus to Neo-Romanticism." (via)