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In traditional portraiture, dogs often accompany the human sitter. Here the animal is the sole focus of attention. As a painter, Morris was largely self-taught. Early in his career he established his approach which remained largely constant. His art is characterised by frank observation and directness in evoking the presence of the subject, in this case his sister's bull terrier. Here, typically, the motif is reduced to its essentials and the subject is set boldy against its background. In 1937, Morris founded the East Anglian School of Painting and Drawing, where Lucian Freud was a pupil.

September 2004