I just came back from visiting my long time friend, artist Julie Good-Kruger, Pennsylvania. My most desired destination for this trip was the Delaware Art Museum, which I’d found out, since my last visit, has the largest collection of PreRaphaelite Art outside of Britain. I brought my camera in and just kept snapping. Most of these images are pretty good; some have a glare from the lights or had to be taken at an angle to avoid a glare, and some are simply a little blurry. However, I think they’ll give a taste of why it is so worthwhile to visit this museum.
This painting shows Millais’ extraordinary sensitivity and accuracy in rendering his subjects, even when he was a very young man.
I’m back on a PRB kick right now and will write more at length about how they inspire me in another blog. I’m currently rereading PreRaphaelites in Love by Gay Daly and The Legend of Elizabeth Siddal by Jan Marsh, as well as two mysteries inspired by Lizzie.
My favorite PreRaphaelites are John Millais and William Holman Hunt. I saw a fabulous exhibit of Hunt’s paintings at the Minneapolis Art Institute a couple of years ago, when I was at an Equine Painting Workshop. During my trip to PA, I spent one rainy day companionably working on art projects with Julie and her husband, Tim. I was copying the painting below because it was raining and windy outside and my plein air plans were dashed.
This painting shows that Rossetti was at one time as taken up with social justice and narrative art as were Hunt and Millais. Later, he just painted a select group of beautiful women over and over again. I find the crusading spirit of the PRBs at their inception far more interesting.
Gideon, glazed tiles by Harold Steward Rathbone, 1900
Simeon Solomon was Jewish and purposely selected models that looked Semitic for his subject.
The Earthly Paradise was a collection of verses that William Morris himself wrote — he was a poet, as well as painter and designer — about pagan Greeks and Scandinavians looking for everlasting life. Odd bedfellows, I think.
The brushwork on this painting is looser than in others if Millais’ paintings. He is apparently influenced by Whistler’s White Girl in this work.
Julie and I just adored this design and just looked and looked. It’s actually a painting. The windows that resulted were installed in a manor, but I had only a camera with me, not a notebook.
We were snorting with laughter at this painting. It’s quite lovely, really, but I mean, what can he be showing her?