Technique and condition

A painting in the typical 'post-Vorticist' phase of Robert's career. This painting comprises a commercially prepared artist's canvas, the composition then drawn onto the surface with a pencil. The artist has then superimposed thin layers of artist's oil paint to create a balanced and generally well-executed composition. The surface of the painting is broken in places by disturbing diagonal ductile cracks. Some minor flaking in the top right corner of the work suggests compromised adhesion between the priming and the paint layers.

The earthy palette brings to mind the tonality of other paintings from this period such as The Connoisseur and Bank Holiday in the Park both of 1921, and of later paintings such as Battle of the Amazons. There are clever colour devices used to exacerbate the tension of the subject such as the occasional use of a bright purple, a deep crimson and acid green. These colours cut through the earth ones like the wounds in Christ's body.

Rachel Barker
June 2001