'Evening pool' was painted in the grounds of Hitchens home near Petworth, Sussex; the property had two small artificial ponds near the house, the Downs visible in the distance. Hitchens and his wife Mollie moved there in 1940 after their London home was damaged by a bomb. In the late 1930s Hitchens had frequently painted in Sussex, after the move the woods there became his main subject matter.
Hitchens worked directly from nature and painted using a horizontal double square format as this encourages the viewer's eye to move from left to right; in 'Evening pool' the viewer's eye is brought back to the centre of the painting by the addition of the boat. Hitchens was formally trained attending the Royal Academy Schools and while there is evidence of the influences of traditional English landscape painting in his work, his interest in modern art especially the work of Cezanne and Braque is demonstrated through his use of blocks of colour, space and depth.
oil on canvas
52.1 x 116.8 cm stretcher; 76.0 x 140.5 x 7.0 cm frame
Signature & date
Signed l.l., brown paint "Hitchens". Not dated.
Not on display
© Reproduced with permission
Shown in 3 exhibitions
Purchases and Acquisitions for 1957, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 18 Feb 1958–16 Mar 1958
18 British Paintings from the Art Gallery of New South Wales, Newcastle Region Art Gallery, Newcastle, Jun 1965–Jul 1965
Modern Britain 1900-1960, NGV: International, Melbourne, 15 Nov 2007–24 Feb 2008
The Lefevre Gallery, London/England, Purchased by the AGNSW from Alex Reid & Lefevre 1957
Referenced in 4 publications
Dorothy and Douglas Dundas, Art Gallery of New South Wales Quarterly, 'A visit to Ivon Hitchens', pg. 74-5, Sydney, Jul 1961, 74 (illus.).
Renée Free, Art Gallery of New South Wales catalogue of British paintings, Sydney, 1987, 87 (illus.).
Ted Gott, Laurie Benson and Sophie Matthiesson, Modern Britain 1900-1960, Melbourne, 2007, 263 (colour illus.).
Anne Kirker and Peter Tomory, British painting 1800–1990 in Australian and New Zealand public collections, Sydney, 1997, 102. cat.no. 976