(Last Updated On May 25, 2022)
William Blake Richmond (1842–1921) was best known for his portrait work and decorative mosaics in St. Paul’s Cathedral. In its way, this composition of a naked child clinging to mother is an archetype. It reminds me a lot of O.G. Rejlander’s Allegory of Motherhood.
Ron, while the Richmond’s painting reminds you of Rejlander’s “Allegory of Motherhood”, I find an even closer relation to one of the scenes depicted in a giant history canvas by Karl Bryullov (exhibited for the first time in 1833 after several years of work) and currently shown in the State Russian Museum in Saint Petersburg. The subject of this painting is the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in AD 79.
In his book “Pompeii’s Ashes: The Reception of the Cities Buried by Vesuvius in Literature, Music and Drama” Dutch archaeologist Eric Moormann describes this scene in a vivid manner: “Towards the centre, a half nude man runs to the left with his wife, who clutches an infant and young nude child, almost treading on a supine woman with beautiful black hair, whose jewelry box has spilled out onto the ground near her head, and whose baby grasps her”.
It’s amusing how in this painting Edith looks rather like Tenniel’s illustration, which I believe was based on someone else entirely. I wonder how many people would assume she’s Alice.
He also painted a wonderful portrait of Alice Liddell and her sisters while they we’re vacationing in Wales.
I do so love Pigtails readers. You guys really do offer some of the most wonderful tidbits. This one is particularly interesting. -Ron
What, no link 😉
or in context:
Right! We strive to offer quality information to readers. Thank you for doing the digging here. -Ron