Frederic George Stephens

Mother and Child

c.1854

In Tate Britain
Artist
Frederic George Stephens 1827–1907
Medium
Oil paint on canvas
Dimensions
Support: 470 x 641 mm
frame: 680 x 842 x 56 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Bequeathed by H.F. Stephens 1932
Reference
N04634

Display caption

Stephens painted this in the first year of the Crimean War (1853-6) and the major world event plays out in the setting of a Victorian nursery. The child pauses playing to reach towards his mother as she reacts to a letter which brings bad news from the conflict. Stephens encloses the figures in a curved frame like a traditional Madonna and Child and employs everyday objects, such as the military toys, as symbols. Stephen’s extremely detailed Pre-Raphaelite style was time-consuming and the picture was never finished.

Gallery label, August 2018

Does this text contain inaccurate information or language that you feel we should improve or change? We would like to hear from you.

You might like