John Melhuish Strudwick

A Golden Thread

exhibited 1885

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On loan

Leamington Spa Art Gallery and Museum (Leamington Spa, UK): Modern Pre-Raphaelites Visionaries

John Melhuish Strudwick 1849–1935
Oil paint on canvas
Support: 724 × 425 mm
frame: 1057 × 760 × 104 mm
Presented by the Trustees of the Chantrey Bequest 1885

Display caption

This picture was first exhibited at the Grosvenor Gallery in 1885 and it was accompanied by the lines: 'Right true it is that these/
And all things else that under Heaven dwell/ Are changed of Time'. The theme of Time is dealt with in two related parts. Below, the three Fates are spinning the thread of life. Their spindles show part gold and part grey threads. The gold part will measure out the allotted span of a person's life. Above, a girl and her lover are talking. It is their happiness that is being determined by the Fates: a bell is tolling in a tower, symbolising the passing of time, and Love's car is waiting in the sky. Strudwick was a pupil of Burne-Jones, whose influence it felt clearly in this picture.

Gallery label, April 1997

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