Curator's Choice: The Harris Family
British (English) School
This interesting group portrait acts as a glimpse into middle-class family life in the 1830s. Members of the family are depicted in a well-appointed room with a floral carpet taking part in activities such as playing music, reading and sketching. The depiction of these activities illustrates to the viewer the social status of the family, suggesting they are well educated. Particularly interesting, is the painting above the fireplace that seems to show the very picture we are looking at in place, again reinforcing the notion that this family has purposely constructed the scene. The pale wall colour and the rather washed out clothing and skin tone of the sitters, ensure the focus of this scene is the figurative set up rather than the individual characteristics of each sitter. This painting is a beautiful yet bizarre one, in which staging and construction of image is most evident.
Available now for just £40 plus postage.