Quiet Intensity

Quiet Intensity

Gwen John (1876–1939) has long been overshadowed by the larger-than-life personality of her brother, fellow painter Augustus John. But in recent years, she has ousted him from the limelight, fulfilling his prediction that 'in fifty years' time, I will be known as the brother of Gwen John'. Her portraits of unknown women sitting in quiet, unassuming interiors [...]

The Pre Raphaelites and Romantic poetry

The Pre Raphaelites and Romantic poetry

The Pre-Raphaelites, like the Romantic poets, were all about inner passion. They thought that this had been lost in the faux-Renaissance froth of the Academy and its unfaltering reverence for Raphael. Inner passion, they thought, was bursting from the work of the artists from before Raphael, such as Giotto. In their journal The Germ, the [...]

A Worldly Art

A Worldly Art

Mariët Westermann’s book A Worldly Art: The Dutch Republic 1585-1718 paints a picture of a society that is in many ways similar to our own. The Dutch Republic in this period, like our own modern society, was a cosmopolitan nation with a global outlook, well-educated citizens, elected representatives and a tolerance of different religions. It [...]