Victorian art holds a significant value in the artwork world. We cannot discuss the art of painting without putting spotlight on the characteristics of Victorian art, which emerged during the 19th century. This was the duration while Queen Victoria ruled England which continued for sixty four years. The characteristics of Victorian Art are defined below:
Early Victorian: Era of Life’s Realms
The Early Victorian era was where the art was intemperately influenced by realism and fidelity to the true aspects of nature. Almost every artist tried to incorporate a moral or spiritual undertone whenever they painted lifelike sceneries. The same elegance and lifelikeness was seen in interior decoration and designs as well.
Late Victorian: When the Realities were obscured
Late Victorian was a time when the realistic aspects of early works were started to be made obscure. Now the art was turned into mythology and fantasy based work from realities of the nature and human life. This was the time when adding sculptures of Gods and Goddesses became an obsession for the art lovers.
Composition: The Blending
Most of the Victorian art contains images or graphics that are a result of various ranges of bright colors as well as the fine detailing of the scene/subject by the artist. Back in the era when most paintings held colourful sightings, the common backdrop used by the painters was the landscape of small farms and rolling hills.
Common Themes: Feminism became the most Common Theme in This Era
Art that had been developed in the 19th century was mostly surrounded around feminism. Most of the paintings in that era depicted women, especially the subjects that involved fairies, landscapes and nudity. Nobody knows exactly where these themes emerged from out of the blue but most of the art in the 19th century revolved around feminism.
During 1837 – 1901, Victorian art held such significance that no other was tried in the United Kingdom. These Victorian paintings are for sale still today and possess the same great value and detail and when they were originally created.
The concept of ‘childhood’ developed during the Victorian era. Before 1937, children were perceived differently. In most of the artwork of that time children were depicted as tiny adults.
They were typically shown as mature individuals wearing adult clothes and doing activities that grownups do.
After the new concept, children started to be conceived as innocents, particularly among the wealthy. This change was evident and started to be clearly shown in the artwork of that time. A big number of books were published during the Victorian era, supporting this new concept of childhood. There was a huge rise in the toy industry as well as the new toys were made by keeping in mind the innocence of children.
This wasn’t all. The childhood concept was also depicted through paintings and other art forms in the Victorian era by various artists. However, if we talk about the literature that supported the new childhood concept, we could not dismiss the discussion about J.M. Barrie, Beatrix Potter and A.A. Milne. These three writers were the conceivers of Peter Pan, Winnie the Pooh and other noteworthy books that are still read by countless children all over the world.
My First Sermon, by Millais, is one of the paintings that depict the childhood concept really well. The oil painting shows a young girl on a church pew, listening to the sermon for the very first time. Her clothes indicate that she comes from a prosperous family, showing the elements of innocence that are exactly what the childhood concept is about. Another important painting from the Victorian era is No Walk Today by Sophie Anderson. The painting shows similar aspects of childhood and was one of the most talked about painting of its time.
If the Victorian era didn’t notice the fault in the childhood concept of that time, there wouldn’t be paintings like My First Sermon or No Walk Today that depict the true picture of childhood which is all about purity and naiveness. Whenever we study the Victorian era, we keep getting amazed what significance it brought to the world of art.
In the history of world arts, there have been a number of artists that gained recognition as the best at their art form.
However, there have been some painters who didn’t get much of recognition but still possessed the quality of extremely fine painters. John Townsend is one of those artists who didn’t get as much fame as Leonardo da Vinci or others of his stature, but has produced a number of magnificent paintings that are liked by the art lovers from all around the globe.
John Townsend is a highly skilled painter from Nottingham. He was born in year 1930 and his father was an art director at ‘Thos Formans & Sons’. John Townsend was just a child when he got the gratification of meeting a lot of big names in the field of painting and other art forms. This helped him develop his skills as he was inspired by the talented people he used to meet. Townsend started his art studies at Nottingham College of Art where he was fortunate enough to learn the art by no one other than Arthur Spooner, who holds great respect in the world of arts.
John Townsend was also in good terms with Sir William, who is one of the most renowned artists of all times. Townsend learned a lot from Sir William and it was John Townsend’s desire to learn more and more about the art of painting that he continued learning and crafting his art for years and years before he made his work public.
John Townsend’s best works include the portraits of John Richard Gunn (1876-1963), Queen Elizabeth II (b. 1926), Alderman Mrs Anne Yates (1968–1974), Alderman Albert James Pounder (1967–1968) and Alderman Sir Frank Small (1963–1967). You can view one of the newest paintings of the artist including Summer Scene and Summer Under the Parasol at Garner Antiques. You can buy them here too!
An antique painting should be neatly preserved so that everyone can witness their history and enjoy it as much as the people in the past have.
The beauty of the painting could be seen for many more generations to come but it all depends on the way the painting has been kept, maintained and cleaned. There isn’t any certain or perfect way of cleaning an antique painting because there is a great deal of detailing and expertise required. If you want to clean or learn how to clean an antique painting then read on below to get an overview of how it is done.
Take the painting out of its frame very carefully, examine the painting closely for any marks or dust spots. If the surface seems to be fine then take a very tiny little spot of the painting and try to clean it with some soap and water and a soft wet cloth. Make sure that you do not submerge the painting with water and be certain not to rub the painting. Make sure that you do it slowly and correctly. After cleaning, let the painting dry in sunlight in a cool dry room far away from sunlight for a couple of days before putting it in the frame again. This method only applies to paintings that simply have dust on them and nothing major.
If the painting has got varnish on it and has turned a different shade due to its age and excess dirt then the cleaning process is a lot more difficult and should be left to the experts to make sure that you do not ruin the painting. The expert restorers will figure out a way to remove the varnish without damaging the painting itself.
If you want to do the whole cleaning procedure by yourself then take a mixture of turpentine and alcohol and dip it in a clean cloth for cleaning the antique paintings. This will remove the varnish from the painting but you have to make sure that you strike the right balance of turpentine and alcohol to successfully remove it all correctly.
After you have cleaned the painting yourself, apply a coat of mastic varnish (easily available in all art supply stores) to the antique painting before placing it inside the frame again so that the cleaning process is a lot easier the next time. Make sure that you let the painting air dry out of sunlight for at least a week before putting it back in the frame and onto the wall.