Eye Candy for Today: Howard Pyle illustration for Mother Hildegarde

The Princess looks into that which she should not have done., from Mother Hildegarde, from The Wonder Clock, pen and ink illustration by Howard Pyle
The Princess looks into that which she should not have done., from Mother Hildegarde, from The Wonder CLock, pen and ink illustration by Howard Pyle (detail)

The Princess looks into that which she should not have done., from Mother Hildegarde, part of The Wonder Clock, a collection of new fairy tales with pen and ink illustration by Howard Pyle. I don’t know the size of location of the original (though I can hope it’s in the collection of the Brandywine River Museum).

Image sourced from this page on the Art & Artists blog.

Pyle was famous for his illustrations of great American adventure stories by prominent authors, but he was an author himself. He wrote and illustrated a wonderful collection of 24 new (at the time) fairy tales, one for each hour of the day. This was one of the illustrations for one of the stories.

If you look on Amazon, you’ll get the impression that the book is out of print, but not so. You can order it directly from the Dover Publications website.

George Clausen’s Day Dreams

Day Dreams, George Clausen, oil on canvas
Day Dreams, George Clausen, oil on canvas

Day Dreams, George Clausen, oil on canvas; roughly 27 x 60 inches (70 x 152 cm). Link is to the image file page on Wikimedia Commons. Their source is a 2007 Sotheby’s auction, so I assume the original is currenty in a private collection.

In this idyllic rural scene by the British painter George Clausen, we can see his admiration for the French painter Jules Bastien-Lepage who was roughly his contemporary. Both painters idealized the lives of farm workers; and both painted with a particularly subtle sensitivity to value relationships.

Laura Theresa Alma-Tadema

Laura Theresa Alma-Tadema Laura Theresa Alma-Tadema

Laura Theresa Alma-Tadema (née Epps) was a British painter active in the late 19th cenntury who was evidently fascinated with Dutch 17th century genre painting, notably the works of Vermeer and De Hooch.

She apparently did not have formal training and likely received most of her instruction from her husband, noted Victorian painter Lawrence Alma-Tadema, who she met when she was 17, and he an established artist at 33. Laura acted as a stepmother to Lawrence’s daughters, including Anna Alama-Tadema, who became a skilled painter in watercolor.

Eye Candy for Today: Rembrandt’s Omval

Rembrandt etching, The Omval Rembrandt etching, The Omval (details)
 

The Omval, Rembrandt van Rijn, etching and drypoint, roughly 7 x 9 inches (19×23 cm); this printing is in the collection of the Metropolitan museum of Art, which has both a zoomable and downloadable version of the image.

Rembrandt was, in my opinion, the greatest master of etching and drypoint in history. Though many of his etchings were of a religious nature, here he has fun with a naturalistic riverfront scene.

The Omval is the name for a well-known spot along the Amstel River. A glorious tree dominates the scene; behind it we see sailboats and what appears to be a passenger ferry on the water. Across the river, we see elements of a town and a mill.

A man stands on the shore, facing away from us and toward the ferry, perhaps in conversation with someone on it.

What we don’t see at first are a pair of lovers that Rembrandt has nestled in the shadows of the great tree (images above, second from top).

The woman is facing to the left, her hand rests on her dress. The man sits behind her, to the left. It appears as though he has his arm raised above the woman’s head, his sleeve obscuring his own face.

Rembrandt has left much to the imagination, both visually and in possible implied narrative. We’re left to wonder if there is a relation between the lovers and the man on the shore, or perhaps someone on the ferry. We can also imagine they’re doing their very best to keep quiet.

The Omval, MetMuseum