John Roddam Spencer Stanhope

Study for ‘Thoughts of the Past’

c.1859

View this artwork by appointment, at Tate Britain's Prints and Drawings Rooms

Artist
John Roddam Spencer Stanhope 1829–1908
Medium
Ink on paper
Dimensions
Support: 610 x 318 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Presented by Mrs Evelyn de Morgan 1917
Reference
N03232

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.

Gallery label, October 2013

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