Gwen John
Dorelia in a Black Dress c.1903–4

Artwork details

Gwen John 1876–1939
Dorelia in a Black Dress
Date c.1903–4
Medium Oil paint on canvas
Dimensions Support: 730 x 489 mm
frame: 885 x 645 x 113 mm
Acquisition Presented by the Trustees of the Duveen Paintings Fund 1949
On display at Tate Britain
Room: 1900

Display caption

The 20th century saw an expansion of opportunities for women and Gwen John and Dorelia McNeill trained at the Slade School of Art which was more liberal than the older Royal Academy. They were part of a group of ‘Bohemians’, artists and intellectuals who lived experimental life-styles. Gwen John painted Dorelia in a Black Dress while the two young women were walking through France, sleeping rough and earning a little from sketching and singing. Dorelia is shown in an informal, intimate way. Her attitude suggests her self-confidence.

February 2016

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