Sir George Clausen Brown Eyes 1891

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Artwork details

Brown Eyes
Date 1891
Medium Oil paint on canvas
Dimensions Support: 559 x 413 mm
frame: 850 x 700 x 120 mm
Acquisition Presented by C.N. Luxmoore 1929
On display at Tate Britain
Room: 1890

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This is a portrait of a local girl from the village of Cookham in Berkshire, where the artist was living in 1891. Clausen started painting open-air ‘rural naturalist’ subjects from 1880, in imitation of the French painter Jules Bastien-Lepage. His Poor Fauvette of 1881 may have influenced the wide-eyed stare and passive immobility of this girl.

The delicate play of light across the model’s features, together with the flicked Impressionist brushwork in the background, suggest both the freshness and ephemerality of youth.

September 2004

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