John Roddam Spencer Stanhope
Study for ‘Thoughts of the Past’ c.1859

Artwork details

Study for ‘Thoughts of the Past’
Date c.1859
Medium Ink on paper
Dimensions Support: 610 x 318 mm
Acquisition Presented by Mrs Evelyn de Morgan 1917
View this artwork by appointment, at Tate Britain's Prints and Drawings Rooms

Display caption

Stanhope’s drawing, for which the Pre-Raphaelite model Fanny Cornforth posed in Stanhope’s studio, shows a ‘fallen’ woman at a window overlooking the Thames at Blackfriars . In the manner of so-called ‘problem women’ pictures of the time her eyes are raised but, unusually, she wears a loose modern gown that partially reveals her body. In his final oil version of the scene (also in Tate’s collection) Stanhope directed the woman’s gaze out at viewers, implicating them in the drama.

October 2013

About this artwork