Studio: international art — 60.1914

Page: 139
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Studio- Ta Ik


From Our Oivn Correspondents.

LONDON.—The loss which British art has
sustained by the death of Sir Alfred East
is certainly to be regarded as irreparable.
—4 Among the artists of our times Ire stood
alone, not only as a man of unusual gifts but as the
possessor of a remarkable and dominating per-
sonality which made its power felt in many direc-
tions, and the position he occupied he had made
for himself by the sincerest devotion to high prin-
ciples of artistic practice. In his art he followed
a noble tradition—a tradition established by some
of our greatest masters of landscape painting—and
he strove with rare consistency to prove himself a
worthy supporter of a splendid creed. An earnest
student of nature, he avoided that tendency towards
realistic trivialities which has affected so many of
the modern painters of landscape, and he sought
always for those finer qualities of decorative ex-
pression which give strength and significance to the
pictorial representation of open-air subjects—for
those qualities of design, colour arrangement, and

decorative sentiment which make a picture a
personal thing rather than a mere record of more
or less closely observed facts. Certainly it was his
sincerity in the pursuit of his ideals that enabled
him to take in a comparatively short career the
place that for some years he held in the art world.
Born in 1849, at Kettering, he had reached the age
of five and twenty before he was able to commence
the serious study of art, and it was nearly ten years
later before he exhibited his first picture at Bur-
lington House, yet for more than twenty years he
has ranked as one of the chief artists of our school.
It is distinctly discreditable to the Royal Academy
that the official recognition of his powers was
delayed until 1S99, when he was elected an Asso-
ciate, and that he had to wait another fourteen
years—until July in the present year—for his pro-
motion to the rank of Royal Academician, and
that none of his works should ever have been
acquired for the Chantrey Fund Collection. Other
societies at home and abroad showed far more
anxiety to do him the honour that was his due. In
1906 he was chosen to succeed Sir Wyke Bayliss
as President of the Royal Society of British Artists,


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