Studio: international art — 75.1918

Page: 99
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On the Painting of Interiors


DURING recent years a number of
artists in this country and abroad
have interested themselves in the
painting of what are called " In-
teriors "—indoor subjects, that is to say, which
offer opportunities for the treatment of attrac-
tive effects of light and shade, and for the
representation of more or less complex details.
Sometimes these paintings have been simply
settings for groups of figures, or for portraits of
people who wished to be pictorially recorded
in the intimate surroundings of their homes,
but quite as often the picture has been entirely
without human interest, and has depended for
its motive solely upon the architectural and
domestic characteristics of the room which the
artist has chosen to study. For both types of
work there is plenty of authority in the past ;
men of all schools and periods have been

attracted by such subjects and have made the
interior much more than a mere background to a
figure or group. The Dutch masters, in par-
ticular, with their love of detail and their
careful technical methods, took full advantage
of the chances which the indoor picture gave
them, and made of it something which claims a
place of considerable importance in art history.

But it is not necessary to seek the authority
of the past to justify the modern painter's
occupation with motives of this character.
On its merits as a matter for observation and
executive expression the interior is well worthy
of close consideration, for it presents problems
of draughtsmanship and composition, of atmos-
phere and light and shade, of colour and tone,
which are sufficiently exacting and which
demand for their proper solution no small
measure of artistic capacity. A rapid impres-
sion of a room may be all very well as a note of
something the artist has seen, but if he intends to

"walnut and delft " by l. campbell taylor

LXXV. No. 310.—January 1919 99
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