Richard McDougall Lecture, Autumn 2013
The Courtauld Institute of Art, Somerset House,
London WC2R 0RN
5.30pm, Kenneth Clark Lecture Theatre
December 10, 2013
Dr Morna O'Neill (Wake Forest University)
“Walter Crane and the Arts and Crafts Watercolor”
In a critique of the Royal Academy published in 1885, the artist and designer Walter Crane described watercolour, “that peculiarly English and home grown art”, as a neglected medium. Yet the Arts and Crafts Exhibition Society, formed in 1887 in the wake of Crane’s remarks, did not address this concern. This lecture will consider the marginal position of watercolour painting in histories of the Arts and Crafts movement and examine the vital place it occupied in Crane’s own art. As Morna O’Neill will discuss, a consideration of artistic craft and “truth to materials” makes watercolour painting something of an Arts and Crafts paradox: it is central to the movement but incidental to its objects.
Inaugurated in May 2011, the Richard McDougall Lecture series is delivered biannually at The Courtauld Institute of Art on the topic of British watercolour painting post-1750.
Open to all, free admission