|The Spirit of Bridport via|
What do you notice in this painting above? I see a young woman with a crown on her head, sitting on a throne. In her hands she is holding a distaff (a tool using for spinning). Outside the right hand window is a tea clipper heading for the shore. Maybe you recognise those cliffs from my blog? This picture is called the " Spirit of Bridport. "
|Weaving the sailcloth via|
In the next picture we are in a weaving shed. The ceilings are low, men and women are busy working on three different looms machines weaving sail cloth.
|Out workers net braiding via|
In the final picture we are in a cottage. The women and young girl are very busy braiding nets. A black cat watches their progress and in the distance you can see the village church and other cottages. In a corner a baby lies fast asleep in a basket.
What do you think of these paintings? My favourite is the bottom one, I love the colours and the way it portrays the work that was carried out by many women in the villages surrounding Bridport.The town has had a rope and net industry for the last 800 years, which is why rope and net is featured in all these pictures. (As this post is about the painting I will leave the story of the rope industry to another time.)
The artist Francis Henry Newbery also known as 'Fra' Newbury believed that art was an activity that the whole community could participate in. These are only a few examples of the paintings/panels he produced for public display in the town hall, which celebrate the history and culture of the area. He would never have imagined that in future these pictures could be shared (through the internet) all around the world!
Francis Newbery is better known for being the successful headmaster of the Glasgow School of Art from 1885 - 1946. He made the school one of the major art institutes in the world. Under his leadership the school expanded and outgrew it's premises. An architectural competition was arranged to design a new building. Charles Rennie Mackintosh won the competition and created the wonderful building that became one of the best examples of 20th century architecture. It was sadly damaged by fire in 2014 and is now being restored.
|Glasgow school of Art -via|
|Glasgow School of Art Library via|
Although Francis Newbery was born in Devon he grew up in Bridport. He studied at Bridport School of Art and became an art master there, before taking up posts in London, and then Glasgow. He retired to Dorset and gave these paintings to the town as thanks for his early education and development. The pictures are view to free to view see here for details..
Do you have any famous artists that have captured local scenes? If you would like to join Barbara in writing a post about your favourite artists or just want to see another coastal location - this time in Jersey in the Channel Islands (between England and France) visit her at Coastal Ripples.
I'm so glad you all enjoyed the stormy waters and Rachel Carson book in my last post. It was lovely to receive so many lovely comments.
Until next time.