Sir Stanley SpencerStudy for 'Apple Gatherers' c.1912

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Artwork details

Sir Stanley Spencer (1891‑1959)
Study for 'Apple Gatherers'
Date c.1912
MediumInk, graphite and watercolour on paper
Dimensionssupport: 276 x 321 mm
Acquisition Bequeathed by Sir Edward Marsh through the Contemporary Art Society 1954
Not on display


This drawing was made while Spencer was still a student at the Slade School of Art in London, to which he travelled each day from his family home in the Berkshire village of Cookham. 'Apple Gatherers' was a subject set by the Slade Sketch Club, and it is likely that this was the drawing for which Spencer was awarded its £25 prize. His teacher, Henry Tonks (1862-1937), had arranged for him to spend part of the 1911-12 Christmas holiday with an old Slade student near Taunton. The surrounding orchards must partly have been an inspiration. Spencer used the drawing as the basis for his painting Apple Gatherers (Tate N05663), started in 1912, and the study is squared for transfer to canvas. The oil, Spencer wrote in 1939, 'was my first ambitious work and I have in it wished to say what life was'… (read more)

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