Still Life with Black Bottle and an Aubergine, 1926
Duncan Grant (Scottish,1885-1978) :
Still life with black bottle and an aubergine
Signed 'Duncan Grant' verso
Oil on board. Painted in 1926
Provenance: John Maynard Keynes Esq
Exhibited: London Artists' Association, Recent Paintings, October 8th - 30th 1929, No 29, Still Life.
Literature: W.G. Constable, Duncan Grant, British Artists of Today VI, London, 1927, plate 15, 'Still Life'
Board height 22 cm., 55.9 in., Length 63.5 cm., 25 in.
In a Spanish, marbled frame
Frame height 76.50 cm. 30 in. Length 84 .25 cm. 33 ¼ in.
This work was painted in the artist's studio at 8 Fitzroy Street. For a period in the early to mid-1920s Duncan Grant painted a series of still lifes in a sober, close-toned palette, which were influenced by Chardin, by Spanish still lifes Grant had seen in Spain in 1923, and with the painting of French contemporaries Grant knew and admired such as Derain and Segonzac.
'One word descriptions are often misleading; but the one word, 'sensibility', goes a long way to sum up the qualities which give Duncan Grant his distinctive position among living artists. His delight in and quick apprehension of subtleties in Nature, especially subtleties of line and colour, are the main sources of his inspiration. In his early work, such as a Still Life in the collection of Mr J M Keynes, the passage from Nature to art is tolerably direct, mainly consisting in a sensitive record of the play of interior light over a group of objects on a table.' (W G Constable)
"The artist walks where the breath of the spirit blows him. He leads the rest of us into fresh pastures, teaching us to love and enjoy what we often begin by rejecting, enlarging our sensibilities and purifying our instincts". John Maynard Keynes when he became the first Chairman of the Arts Council, when it was established immediately after the war, commenting on the role of Duncan Grant. Quite apart from the comforting endorsement (as if any were needed) of his having owned this particular painting, it is interesting in art historical terms that that it was painted by one "Bloomsbury" and owned by another!
Quite apart from the comforting endorsement of John Maynard Keynes having owned this particular painting, it is significant in art historical terms that that it was painted by one "Bloomsbury" and owned by another.
Paintings in Museums and Public Art Galleries : UK
• Birmingham Museums & Art Gallery, UK
• Fitzwilliam Museum at the University of Cambridge, UK
• National Galleries of Scotland, Edinburgh
• National Museum Wales, Cardiff
• Ashmolean Museum at the University of Oxford, UK
• Bolton Art Gallery, UK
• Brighton & Hove Museums, England
• Charleston, the country home of the Bloomsbury Group, East Sussex, England
• Courtauld Institute of Art, London, UK
• Manchester City Art Gallery, UK
• National Gallery of Victoria, Australia
• National Portrait Gallery, London, UK
• Southampton City Art Gallery, England
• Tate Gallery, London, UK
• The Hepworth Wakefield, England
• Victoria and Albert Museum Catalogue, London, UK
• Worcester City Art Gallery & Museum, England
Paintings in Museums and Public Art Galleries : Worldwide:
• Pomona College Museum of Art, California
• The Huntington Library, California
• Institute of Chicago
• Cleveland Museum of Art, Ohio
• Princeton University Art Museum, New Jersey
• Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, Australia
Provenance: John Maynard Keynes Esq
Exhibitions: London Artists' Association, Recent Paintings, October 8th - 30th 1929, No 29, Still Life.
Literature: W.G. Constable, Duncan Grant, British Artists of Today VI, London, 1927, pl. 15, as 'Still Life'.
Modern (Of the period)
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