Lot 40: Sir John Lavery RA RSA RHA (1856-1941)A Street in TangierOil on board, 25.5 x 35.5cm (10 x 14'')SignedProvenance: With The Pyms Gallery, LondonLiterature: Kenneth McConkey, 'The White City - Sir John Lavery in Tangier in The Irish Arts Review Y
December 7, 2016
Dublin 2, Dublin, IrelandLive Auction
Description: Sir John Lavery RA RSA RHA (1856-1941)A Street in TangierOil on board, 25.5 x 35.5cm (10 x 14'')SignedProvenance: With The Pyms Gallery, LondonLiterature: Kenneth McConkey, 'The White City - Sir John Lavery in Tangier in The Irish Arts Review Yearbook 1989-90, Full page illustration Page 60From the 1830s North Africa and the Middle East became places of artistic pilgrimage, but while painters such as Lewis, Lear and Holman Hunt preferred the eastern Mediterranean, in Lavery's era an instant Orient was to be found by simply crossing the Straits of Gibraltar. Where Orientalist painters concentrated upon narrating the Eastern way of life, the rituals of the Mosque and the Harem, Lavery's generation looked to this environment for its colour. Lavery's first visit to Morocco took place in 1891, at the instigation of his friends, the Glasgow artists Arthur Melville and Joseph Crawhall. After almost annual visits, in 1903 he bought Dar-el-Midfah ('the House of the Cannon', for a half buried cannon in the garden), a small house in the hills outside Tangier which he continued to visit with his family over the next 20 years. It has been claimed that for Lavery the strong light, cloudless sky, white walls and bright colour of Arab dress helped to cleanse his eye after sustained periods of studio portraiture. Within a few years of visiting Morocco for the first time, the light sable sketching of his Glasgow period gave way to a richer and more sensuous application.In his article The White City - Sir John Lavery in Tangier in the Irish Arts Review Yearbook 1989-90 (Page 58) Kenneth McConkey mentions this work:- As an avid sketcher, he made frequent sorties into the bye-ways of the city and small pictures such as A street in Tangier' typify his fascination for the sun bleached walls and strong shadows tinged with violet.With thanks to Dr Kenneth McConkey whose research and writings formed the basis of this note.