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The composition of this painting contrasts the spikey leaves of the artichokes with the elegant descending curve of the tail of the golden pheasant in the oriental screen. The thickness of the paint also gives a distinctive texture to the painting.

Fry took up painting after an education in science at Cambridge. He was principally a writer on art, both on the old masters and the decorative arts as well as modern painting in Paris. He encouraged an appreciation of Cezanne and the Cubists in Britain, and interpreted their art in terms of abstract form.

September 2004