Newlyn School Interiors: Penlee Gallery
A rare opportunity to see two famous Newlyn School paintings, both of which usually reside at Tate in London.
The artist Frank Bramley painted A Hopeless Dawn in 1888 and it was bought by the Chantrey Bequest for the nation. This powerful painting shows a grieving young woman following the loss of a loved one at sea. In contrast, Stanhope Forbes’s The Health of the Bride shows a happier scene of a wedding day and was first exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1889. It was purchased by Henry Tate for £600 and donated to the Tate Gallery five years later. The money from this sale finally gave Forbes the financial independence to marry fellow artist Elizabeth Armstrong in 1889, after a long engagement.
The exhibition also provides a chance to see A Game of Old Maid by Elizabeth Forbes, a painting from a Private Collection whose loan was made possible by Richard Green Galleries. This painting has not been exhibited publically in over 30 years.
The paintings will be on display alongside over 60 other works and original photographs showing life behind closed doors in Penzance, Newlyn and the surrounding areas in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.
The Newlyn School painters were a group of artists who settled in Newlyn in the 1880s and painted scenes of life in the local fishing community. Although the artists were most famous for painting out of doors - ‘en plein air’ - they were also highly-skilled at painting the interiors of Newlyn, which included cottages, schools, sail lofts, workshops and scenes posed in the artist’s own homes and studios. The exhibition will explore the lives of Newlyners through these unique and special paintings.
The paintings show domestic scenes of contemplation and grief as well as cheerful card games, reading and other pastimes. In addition to cottage interiors and wealthy town houses, there are scenes from industrial and religious settings.
Alongside the exhibition, Penlee House will be running free family activities every Saturday afternoon from 2.30pm to 3.30pm. There is no need to book, just drop in and create a unique artwork to take home.
The exhibition will be displayed in all of the ground floor galleries, with a further selection of Newlyn School and Lamorna paintings on display in Gallery 5.