An original 1875 charcoal drawing, A.C.H. Luxmoore Angel Sculpture Study.
A beautiful, melancholic figure of an angel with downcast eyes. The depiction of angels is important in Pre-Raphaelite art, coinciding with the Victorian fascination with the angelic body. This angel has the appearance of a Pre-Raphaelite beauty, drawn in a realist style.
On pale blue paper. The artist appears to have applied a pale yellow/brown background wash. There is an additional portrait on the verso, possibly a self-portrait or portrait of a fellow artist.
Initialled and dated lower right.
Some age toning in places as shown.
23.1cm x 15.2cm.
Arthur Coryndon Hansler Luxmoore (1842-1881) was born in Willesden, Middlesex, and lived in London and Herne Bay, Kent. He exhibited at the Society of British Artists and at the Dudley Gallery, London, of which John Ruskin was on the Council. The Dudley Gallery was founded in 1864 for the public display of watercolour pictures by painters who were not members of the regular watercolour societies.
Popular prints were produced after his paintings of appealing genre scenes and narrative subjects, which were reproduced in publications of the day such as the Illustrated London News. His 1869 Dudley Gallery exhibition met with critical acclaim, the Spectator praising him as “a true colourist” and finding that “there is a good deal of [this] French excellence… in Mr Luxmoore’s pictures”; The Art Journal reported that “A.C.H. Luxmoore shows greater knowledge and maturity than most of this Piccadilly confraternity”; and The Architect concluded that “the work is admirable throughout”.
A.C.H. Luxmoore’s son was Sir Arthur Fairfax Charles Coryndon Luxmoore KC PC (1876—1944), barrister and judge who sat as a Lord Justice of Appeal.
This work forms part of a fascinating collection of works by mid-19th century artists Marmaduke A. Langdale, George Dunkerton Hiscox and A.C.H. Luxmoore. The collection evidences the mutual friendships and influences between the artists, and their shared affinities with the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood.
The collection includes a stunning watercolour of a Pre-Raphaelite beauty, as well as melancholic angels and medieval and Elizabethan subjects, which were favoured by the Pre-Raphaelites. Founded in London in 1848, the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood believed in an art of serious subjects treated with maximum realism. They used subjects from literature and poetry as well as religious themes, and sought to promote a medievalised art as a way of restoring a lost wholeness of life in the face of modern mechanisation. In the 1860s they developed interests in medieval designs and hand-crafts – many of the pictures in this collection have a crafted, decorative quality or include meticulous attention to botanical detail.
The collection as a whole is also fascinating for the friendships it reveals between the artists: Marmaduke A. Langdale and George Dunkerton Hiscox both lived on the Thames (Landgale at Staines and Hiscox at Windsor), and painted the surrounding rural landscape together. The collection includes a watercolour of the two artists painting together en plein air, as well as notes and cards sent between them. Langdale wrote George Dunkerton Hiscox’s memoir, published in The Art Record in 1901. The collection also includes a drawing by A.C.H. Luxmoore of Emma Edith Langdale, and a charcoal depicting Langdale sketching at Windsor.
Other associated artists in the collection include Brighton artist Amy Scott (Langdale lived for a time at Brighton) and Victorian illustrator Fred Barnard, famous for his acclaimed Charles Dickens illustrations.
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Product code: JD-946