|Sir George Clausen, self portrait|
In Part 2 of this mini-series about the peasant art of English painter, George Clausen, I mentioned that I would tell how he came to be knighted and, thereafter, be known as Sir George Clausen. It turns out he was knighted for a mural he painted, but it is not a mural featuring peasants. It is a painting titled The English People Reading Wycliffe's Bible. It was painted in 1925-27 and is in the english House of Parliament. Here is a picture of the mural…
|The English People Reading Wycliffe's Bible|
(click the painting to see a larger view, and notice
the field with it's shocks of grain in the background)
For those who don't know, John Wycliffe was a priest who translated the Bible into English (from the Latin Vulgate) and smuggled the copies into England. He was persecuted by the Catholic church for doing so. Thirty years after his death (of stroke) his bones were exhumed and burned by the church. Wycliffe paved the way for the Reformation.
Back to Sir George Clausen….
I can't find a lot about George Clausen's life but I did find the following quote from friends describing him:"In personal character he was quiet, modest, kindly and of courtly manners," and "Clausen was a horribly domestic creature full of regard for old friends and obviously a happy nature in happy circumstances." In short, he sounded like a nice chap.
Here are some more examples of George Clausen's peasant art, examples that give us a glimpse into the agrarian way of life that once was:
|Frosty March Morning|
|The Stone Pickers|