-By Howard Lyon
Valentine Prinsep and Thomas Cooper Gotch are two 19th century painters that created some wonderful works. I was not aware of their body of work until recently. I had seen a few paintings by them both through the years but had not identified the artists.
As more of the world's museums digitize their collections and works go up for auction we will hopefully continue to discover more artists that have been in storage or obscurity.
Both of these artists are associated with the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood (PRB), not as members but in bearing their influence. You can see it in some of the paintings below, but both artists developed their own clear voice as they developed.
Valentine Prinsep - 1838-1904
One of Prinsep's primary influences was Dante Gabriel Rossetti, a member of the PRB. Prinsep met Rossetti in 1857 at the age of 19. He was also good friends with Millais and Burne-Jones, so he came to the PRB influence thoroughly.
I love the palette of this painting below. The title of the painting is a strange one - The Lady of the Tooti-Nameh or the Legend of the Parrot - According to Sotheby's the title of the piece comes from the Tutinama. The narrator of the book is a parrot who tells his beautiful owner, Khojasta, stories to keep her occupied while her husband is abroad. That Prinsep would be literate in a story from India isn't a surprise as he was born in Calcutta and spent the first part of his life there.
This painting reminds me a little of Tissot too, with the variety of textiles and patterns.
|The Lady of the Tooti-Nameh or the Legend of the Parrot|
|Medea the Sorceress|
|The Flight of Jane Shore|
|Sketch for The Visitation|
The painting below is one of my favorites. The drama of Winter and the cascade of petals from Summer's hands draw me in.
|At the First Touch of Winter Summer Fades Away|
|My Lady Betty|
|A Girl Carrying Grapes|
|The Mandolin Player|
Thomas Cooper Gotch - 1854 - 1931
Gotch began his career painting in the naturalist/realist style of artists like Stanhope Forbes and Albert Chevallier Tayler, but these early works aren't what he is known best for today. It wasn't until he traveled to Italy in 1891- 1892 that his work took a dramatic shift. His compositions became a little flatter in style, but much bolder in color and pattern.
A painting of his daughter Phyllis playfully depicts her as a queen, complete with a floral crown and reed for a scepter.
|My Crown and Sceptre|
This is probably his most well know works.
|Study for The Birthday Party|
|A Pageant of Childhood|
|The Lantern Parade|
|Death the Bride|