John Crome

Mousehold Heath, Norwich

c.1818–20

Medium
Oil paint on canvas
Dimensions
Support: 1099 x 1810 mm
frame: 1500 x 2210 x 150 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Purchased 1863
Reference
N00689

Display caption

Crome advised a fellow painter 'Breadth must be attended to... Trifles in Nature must be overlooked'. However, the 'breadth' of Crome's great picture
of Mousehold Heath was unacceptable to his contemporaries, and the painting remained unsold. According to one account, it was cut in two after Crome's death and used as window blinds by another Norwich artist. Another story says that a dealer in Windsor had
extra figures - a butcher's boy driving sheep - painted into it, presumably
to make it more saleable. These
theories have never been confirmed, although a vertical join remains visible
in the canvas.

Gallery label, September 2004

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