Sir Stanley Spencer Camouflaged Grenadier. Verso: Two Composition Studies for Burghclere Chapel 1922–3

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Artwork details

Artist
Title
Camouflaged Grenadier. Verso: Two Composition Studies for Burghclere Chapel
Date 1922–3
Medium Graphite and watercolour on paper. Verso: graphite and watercolour on paper
Dimensions Support: 505 x 371 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition Purchased 1927
Reference
N04245
Not on display

Catalogue entry

N04245 Recto: CAMOUFLAGED GRENADIER 1922–3
Verso: TWO COMPOSITION STUDIES FOR BURGHCLERE CHAPEL

 

Inscr. on back ‘Camouflaged Grenadier. 9’ b.c.
Pencil and wash (squared for painting), 19 7/8×14 5/8 (50·5×36·5).
Purchased from the Goupil Gallery (Duveen Drawings Fund) 1927.
Exh: Goupil Gallery, February 1927 (5).

A study for the soldier seen in the foreground of the fourth arched-top painting on the north wall of Burghclere Chapel, overlooking the altar. The artist knew this man; he was a particularly daring character and was killed during the fighting in Macedonia (information from Gilbert Spencer, 26 October 1961).

On the verso are two preliminary watercolour studies for the east wall composition of the Burghclere Chapel murals which appear to be superimposed over a third pencil sketch of a military camp, in which tents, etc., are indicated on the skyline. The two watercolour studies show one feature, that of the soldier seated between two mules (on the left), common to both and to the final painting in the chapel. Otherwise they bear little obvious relationship to the finished composition. The pure landscape background which appears in both is considerably reduced in the finished composition. The mules, which are in the foreground here, are afterwards relegated to the middle background, while the motif of intermingled crosses is only suggested in the left-hand study at the top right-hand corner.

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

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