Studio: international art — 85.1923

Page: 262
DOI issue: DOI article: DOI Page: Citation link: 
https://digi.ub.uni-heidelberg.de/diglit/studio1923/0282
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MISS EILEEN SOPER'S ETCHINGS


“ PATIENCE.” BY
EILEEN A.SOPER

MISS EILEEN SOPER'S ETCHINGS
OF CHILDHOOD. BY MALCOLM C.
SALAMAN. a a a a a

THAT a girl of fifteen should have had
two etchings accepted for exhibition
on the walls of the Royal Academy was an
event sensational enough to draw crowds
of smilingly sceptical Private Viewers into
the little room devoted to the engraving
arts. u A flash in the pan, of course," they
sneered. ** We know these juvenile prodi-
gies of talent; they never do anything
afterwards, especially girls." That was
in 1921, and Miss Eileen Soper, being full
of human nature, may by this time have
indulged in a little modest laugh at the
sceptics of two years ago ; for her subse-
quent work has gained in artistic quality,
maintained its individuality, and fully
justified the confidence of those of us who
discerned a rare promise in those two early
plates, La Barriere Cassee and The Swing.
What was so extraordinary in them, apart
from the delightful freshness and spon-
taneity of pictorial conception with which
they interpreted children in movements of
262

impulsive enjoyment, was the graphic ex-
pressiveness and vivacity of the bitten line,
which revealed even at that early age an
authentic etcher. With this rare equip-
ment of delicate craftsmanship, instinctive
almost, and increasingly reliable in the
service of her artistic intuitions. Miss
Soper's etching-needle has adventured
pictorially as none, I think, had ever
adventured with so understanding a sym-
pathy among the natural moods of child-
hood before any self-consciousness has
begun to taint them with an imitative
grown-uppishness, and while the business
of play in any form still absorbs the child's
whole being. The etched line would seem
to be this young artist's native idiom, and
no medium other than etching, perhaps,
could have responded so subtly to the
vivid suggestiveness of her sensitive

7 *

“ TRAGEDY." BY
EILEEN A.SOPER
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