67.0 x 53.4cm stretcher; 98.2 x 85.8 x 6.0cm frame
From 1843 to 1847 George Watts lived in Italy, studying firsthand the monu-mental masterpieces of the Renaissance, most notably Michelangelo, Tintoretto and the Venetian colourists. He sought to achieve in his work a marriage of sculptural solidity and painterly warmth. Both a painter and sculptor, he regarded artistic ambidexterity as a duty. Many of the allegorical paintings Watts produced are bombastic in scale and abstruse in meaning. Nonetheless, his Victorian public welcomed these often clumsy conceptions as faultless expressions of genius, going so far as to accord him the title of the English Michelangelo. Watts portrayed most of the men and women of culture of his day, amassing a virtual anthology of English society. The ravishing 'Alice' shows him at his understated best. The sitter has been captured in a state of reverie undisturbed by interruptions from the outside world, and spared the histrionic excesses more characteristic of this painter's style.
AGNSW Handbook, 1999.
George Watts (England, b.1817, d.1904), England, Gift of the Executors of the Estate of the late G.F. Watts 1907
Renée Free (Australia) (Author), Art Gallery of New South Wales catalogue of British paintings, Sydney, 1987, 206 (illus.).
Bruce James (Australia) (Author), Edmund Capon (England; Australia, b.1940) (Director), Art Gallery of New South Wales handbook, Domain, 1999, 42 (colour illus.).
Peter Tomory (United Kingdom) (Author), Anne Kirker (New Zealand; Australia, b.1947) (Author), British painting 1800-1990 in Australian and New Zealand public collections, Sydney, 1997, 176. cat.no. 2264
Royal Hibernian Academy of Arts (Ireland), Watts memorial exhibition at the Royal Hibernian Academy, 1906.
Laing Art Gallery, Newcastle- Upon-Tyne (England), Catalogue of the special loan collection of works by the late G. F. Watts, R.A., O.M., 1905.
Unknown, Grosvenor Gallery, England 1884, Grosvenor Gallery, London, 1884–1884.
Unknown, Munich 1893, Exhibition Venue Unknown, 1893–1893.
Unknown, Leeds 1893, Exhibition Venue Unknown, 1893–1893.
Unknown, Cardiff 1894, Exhibition Venue Unknown, 1894–1894.
Unknown, Manchester 1905, Manchester City Art Gallery, 1905–1905.
Special loan collection of the works by the late G.F. Watts, Laing Art Gallery, Newcastle- Upon-Tyne, Aug 1905–Aug 1905.
Watts memorial exhibition at the Royal Hibernian Academy, Royal Hibernian Academy of Arts, 1906–1906.