Catalogue entry

N05630 DEATH OF A PEASANT 1911

Not inscribed.
Canvas, 14 1/2×12 1/2 (37×32).
Chantrey Purchase from the Leicester Galleries 1944.
Coll: Sir Michael Sadler, probably bought 1911.
Exh: 19 Fitzroy Street, c. 1911; International Exhibition, Carnegie Institute, Pittsburgh, 1925 (153); British Painting since Whistler, National Gallery, 1940 (147); Selected Paintings, Drawings and Sculpture from the Collection of the late Sir Michael Sadler, Leicester Galleries, January–February 1944 (121, repr.); R.A., 1944 (608).
Lit: Frank Rutter, Some Contemporary Artists, 1922, p.170.
Repr: Kennedy, 1924, pl.1; Studio, CXXXVIII, 1949, p.66.

Based on a scene witnessed by the artist in Brittany where he stayed 1910–11, and painted on his return to England in 1911. The woman was the mother of ten children, the youngest of whom was two years old. No.T.102 is inspired by the same event (letter of 24 August 1956). The artist thought that it was on show for some time at 19 Fitzroy Street, where Sickert was good enough to vaunt it to prospective purchasers, and that it was probably there that Sir Michael Sadler bought it (letter of 22 November 1955), but there is also a label of Carfax & Co. on the back. Lamb had a studio at 8 Fitzroy Street from 1909 to 1911.

A second version was painted soon after and was, according to the artist, the first to be exhibited (at the N.E.A.C., summer 1911 (198), where it was bought by Sir Augustus Daniel); it ‘was a technical experiment - glazing over a monochrome grisaille’ (letter of 22 November 1955). It was also in the C.A.S. exhibition at Manchester, winter 1911 (61), and the Goupil Gallery, 1913 (33).

Published in:
Mary Chamot, Dennis Farr and Martin Butlin, The Modern British Paintings, Drawings and Sculpture, London 1964, I