How two people changed the history of painting in the twentieth century, and destroyed John Singer Sargent’s reputation.
During the 1920s, he painted some of his finest conventional landscapes, and became overtly surrealist.
Uniquely, he worked as a surgeon before becoming a full-time painter. He eventually became Slade Professor too.
Later paintings were largely religious in subject, but he continued to control colour and explore the effects of light.
Even the usually vituperative critic Roger Fry was forced to admit his importance to Monet and most other artists of the day.
It was Clive Bell’s aesthetics which underpinned Roger Fry’s promotion of the Post-Impressionists. Here is what he wrote.
An exhibition in London in 1910 changed the course of history for Cézanne, and John Singer Sargent.
Whether Sargent was ever a true Impressionist will remain a matter of debate, but his uncommissioned work was loose, full of light and colour.