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The lingering influence of Objective Abstraction can still be detected in loose painterly passages in this picture, particularly at the top right. Moynihan abandoned abstraction partly owing to its seeming isolation from contemporary life. He returned to representational painting as if for the first time, though influenced by great masters from Velasquez to Picasso. The still life in this picture was repainted several times. The vase is based on eighteenth century Spanish glass. Soon afterwards Moynihan, a visitor to the Euston Road School, began to paint in a more clearly defined manner. Still life and figures in interiors, along with portraits, would become some of his principal themes.

September 2004