Sir William Rothenstein

Jan Toorop


Not on display

Sir William Rothenstein 1872–1945
Oil paint on canvas
Support: 622 × 508 mm
Purchased 1924

Display caption

This is a portrait of the Dutch symbolist painter, Jan Toorop, who came to England in 1885. Rothenstein later recalled that he had a ‘magnificent head’ and the ‘physical glamour of a portrait by Titian or Tintoretto’. Rothenstein emphasises Toorop’s distinguishing features, including his thick black hair and penetrating eyes. 

Rothenstein wrote that Toorop was one of his first models when he settled in London, and that the study was done in one sitting as he ‘didn’t know how to repaint’.

Gallery label, August 2004

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Catalogue entry

N03850 JAN TOOROP 1894

Not inscribed.
Canvas, 24 1/2×20 (62×51).
Purchased from an unrecorded source (Clarke Fund) 1924.
Exh: N.E.A.C., November 1896 (65); Carfax Gallery, March 1907 (5); the artist's house, Hampstead, 19 March 1914 (45).
Lit: Men and Memories, I, 1931, p.177.

The Dutch symbolist painter, Jan Toorop (1858–1928), came to England in 1885 and married an Irishwoman. The artist states (loc. cit.) that Toorop was one of his first sitters when he settled in London, and that the study was done in one sitting, his usual habit at the time, because he ‘didn't know how to repaint’

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

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