Francis Michael Evans, Harrogate (by 1906)
Sir Charles C. Wakefield (sold: Christies, London, June 18, 1909, lot 136)
Francis Michael Evans, Harrogate (acquired at the above sale)
W.W. Sampson, London,
W.L. Peacock, London (acquired March, 1911)
Mr. Mungall-Creiff (acquired from the above in April, 1911)
Leger Galleries, London (by 1973)
Private collection, United States (sold: Sotheby's, New York, February 12, 1997, lot 82)
Anderson Galleries, Beverly Hills
Acquired from the above by the present owner
Letter from Evans to Godward, May 24, 1906
Vern G. Swanson, John William Godward, The Eclipse of Classicism, Woodbridge, Suffolk, 1997, p. 217, no. 1906.7, illustrated p. 83
The solitary, contemplative and unaffected women of Godward's paintings may well be seen as a reflection of the artist's own personality and disposition. His mother was Low Church Evangelical, and her religiousness and severity clearly left an impression on her son. This may have been the reason he very rarely portrayed women in the nude, but veiled them in diaphanous robes. In The Quiet Pet, the fabric is a deep pink, as in his masterpiece Golden Hours, sold in these rooms in November, 2010. The meticulous folds exhibit the influence of Leighton, whose work Godward admired, while the plate of cherries is borrowed from the paintings of fellow classicist Edward Poynter. Sir Lawrence Alma-Tadema's composition, Quiet Pets, in which a Roman woman sits in the company of tortoises, is another likely influence.
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