John Varley A Blot. Trees over a Lake date not known

Artwork details

John Varley 1778–1842
A Blot. Trees over a Lake
Date Date not known
Medium Watercolour on paper
Dimensions Support: 91 x 131 mm
Acquisition Purchased as part of the Oppé Collection with assistance from the National Lottery through the Heritage Lottery Fund 1996
View this artwork by appointment, at Tate Britain's Prints and Drawings Rooms

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Varley painted many small, imaginary landscape sketches from the late 1830s onwards, and it is most likely that this drawing dates from this period. He advocated simplifying compositions, and the 'blot' method devised by Cozens was a particularly useful way of achieving this. He was very adept at the use of flat washes and this has been taken to extremes in this landscape 'blot'. A very wet ink was quickly put down in the central trees with a fully loaded brush. A drier brush was used for the surface of the lake.

August 2004

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