Catalogue entry

N04462 BATHSHEBA c. 1919–21

Not inscribed.
Canvas, 26×20 (66×51).
Bequeathed by H. B. Harris 1929.
Coll: In the artist's studio until at least 1923; purchased from Barbizon House by Henry B. Harris c. 1927–8.
Exh: N.E.A.C., December 1921–January 1922 (95); C.A.S., Paintings and Drawings, Grosvenor House, 1923 (156), lent by P. W. Steer; East Kent Art Society, Canterbury, 1924 (3); Barbizon House, May 1927 (7); Exposition de Peinture Anglaise Moderne, Palais des Beaux-Arts, Brussels, February–March 1929 (101); Tate Gallery, April–July 1929 (40).
Lit: MacColl, 1945, pp.102, 106, 147, 219.
Repr: Barbizon House Record, 1928, No.33; National Gallery, Millbank [Tate Gallery], Review of the Acquisitions, 1927–29, 1930, p.48.

Sir Kenneth Clark recalled (MacColl, op. cit., p.102) how as a schoolboy in 1919 he called on Steer hoping to purchase one of his pictures, but ‘he [Steer] said he had nothing at all which he could offer me, although he afterwards relented and produced the Nude of a very fat girl seen from behind which is now in the Tate and did not appeal to me, as well as being somewhat beyond my purse’. In a letter to the compiler (23 January 1958) Sir Kenneth confirmed 1919 as the year of his visit to Steer. He also remarked that the picture now appeared to be more finished than when first he saw it. The British Museum card-index, prepared by Collins Baker, records another painting of this model, painted 1921, canvas, 18×30 in. She reclines, with back turned, on a blue couch.

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