N05380 BRONZE BALLET 1940
Tempera on linen laid on panel, 25×30 (63·75×76).
Presented by the artist 1942.
Exh: New Movements in Art, London Museum, March–May 1942 (10); Art Exhibitions Bureau tour, Leicester, Birkenhead, Bolton, Manchester, Hull, Liverpool School of Architecture, and Doncaster, May 1942–May 1943; Tate Gallery, February–March 1951 (41).
Repr: Hesketh Hubbard, A Hundred Years of British Painting 1851–1951, 1951, pl.117.
In a letter to the Director (24 October 1942) the artist wrote that ‘“Bronze Ballet” was painted in April and May 1940 at Maresfield, Sussex - to the somewhat noisy accompaniment, so far as I can remember of the bombardment of Abbeville, Boulogne and Calais - all mingled with the call of the cuckoo! It is one of a series of many paintings done as a Le Havre series, it is in no sense a topographical view of any particular scene but all the motifs or design elements are to be found in that part and the two jetties “place” it more or less.’
Another version was purchased from the artist by Sir Arthur Bliss in 1942 (25×35 1/2 in., inscr. ‘Wadsworth 1940’ b.l.) and is now in the Towner Art Gallery, Eastbourne. This was painted in March and April 1940, and is a larger and more complex composition than N05380. It is reproduced in colour in Anthony Bertram, A Century of British Painting, 1851–1951, 1951, pl.59.
Mary Chamot, Dennis Farr and Martin Butlin, The Modern British Paintings, Drawings and Sculpture, London 1964, II