Harold Knight

A Student

exhibited 1938

Not on display

Harold Knight 1874–1961
Oil paint on canvas
Support: 610 × 508 mm
Presented by the Trustees of the Chantrey Bequest 1938

Display caption

The identity of the sitter in this picture remains a mystery. The fact that she is holding a pencil and pad suggests that she may be an art student. This is one of a series of pictures by Knight showing single female sitters absorbed in an activity, such as reading, writing, or even putting on a shoe. The meticulous technique, and the way the sitter's eyes are averted, creates the impression that the woman is the passive recipient of the artist's concentrated gaze. Unlike in other portraits of male artists, the sitter is not shown actively assuming an 'artistic' pose.

Gallery label, August 2004

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Catalogue entry

N04957 A STUDENT c. 1938
Inscr. ‘Harold Knight’ b.c.
Canvas, 24×20 (61×51).
Chantrey Purchase from the artist 1938.
Exh: R.A., 1938 (5).
Repr: Royal Academy Illustrated, 1938, p.61.

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

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