N06235 THE MISSISSIPPI AT MINNEAPOLIS 1948–50
Inscr. ‘Bloch’ b.l. and ‘Missippi [sic] at Minneapolis 48’ on back of canvas.
Canvas, 28×36 1/4 (71×92).
Purchased from the artist's widow (Cleve Fund) 1954.
Coll: Purchased by Cyril Frankel from the artist 1954, but surrendered for purchase by the Tate Gallery.
Exh: Festival of Jewish Arts, McLellan Galleries, Glasgow, February 1951 (14), as ‘Mississippi and Minneapolis’; Anglo-Jewish Exhibition, 1851–1951, Ben Uri Art Gallery, July–August 1951 (11); Martin Bloch, Antonio Frasconi and Jack Taylor, Western Art Circuit, Canada, 1952–3 (14).
When at Minneapolis in 1948 (teaching at the Walker Art Center) Bloch was particularly impressed by the river as the one outstanding feature of a rather dull town. He would often stand at one of the bridges for as long as an hour, making quick pen-and-ink studies and storing up mental images of the river's colours and changing forms. He began work on the under-painting of the final canvas in September 1948, but the picture was not finished until 1950, most of the actual painting being done in London. (Information from the artist's widow in conversation, 26 October 1954.)
Mary Chamot, Dennis Farr and Martin Butlin, The Modern British Paintings, Drawings and Sculpture, London 1964, I