- Museum number
An orchard by a stream; water across foreground, trees beyond. 1874
Watercolour and bodycolour
- Production date
Height: 229 millimetres
Width: 318 millimetres
- Curator's comments
- The following is from Lindsay Stainton, Nature into Art, British Museum Press, 1991, no. 99, p. 72, where it is titled 'An Orchard by a Stream':
"A leading figure in the Arts and Crafts movement, Crane was also a book illustrator and designer and a social and political writer. He had been apprenticed to one of the leading engravers of the period, W. J. Linton, and from this technical background he was able to develop considerable craftsmanship in the art of the book. He studied illuminated manuscripts, early printed books, the works of the Pre-Raphaelites and Japanese prints, all of which were to influence the design of the children's books for which he is best known today; with their flat tints and strong, simplified outlines they set new standards.
Crane's landcapes are little known, but for a period in the 1870s and 1880s he painted a small number of haunting, dream-like watercolours under the influence of Edward Burne-Jones's 'twilight world of dark mysterious woodlands, haunted streams, meads of deep green starred with burning flowers, veiled in a dim and mystic light' (Walter Crane, 'An Artist's Reminiscences', 1907, p. 84). This watercolour is dated June 1874, a year after Crane and his wife returned from a two-year visit to Italy, where he had devoted most of his time to painting and drawing landscape."
The following is taken from John Gere, Pre Raphaelite Drawings in the British Museum, 1994, no 95 where it is titled 'A Stream in a Wood' :
Painted not long after Crane's return from Italy, and still very much in the spirit of his Italian views. In 'An Artist's Reminiscences' (1907) he speaks of his admiration of Burne Jones's "twilight world of dark mysterious woodlands, haunted streams, meads of deep green starred with burning flowers, veiled in a dim and mystic light".
Christopher Newall, in 'Pre-Raphaelite Vision' (no. 148)
noted that Crane's autobiography gives an account of visits to Hythe, overlooking Southampton Waterc, and then Swanage in Dorset in the summer of 1874.
See also, K. Sloan, 'The tormentingly elusive' art of drawing landscape', in K. Sloan (ed.), Places of the Mind: British watercolour landscapes 1850-1950, (London, 2017), pp. 24-67
- Not on display
- Exhibition history
1991 Jan-Mar, Ohio, Cleveland Mus of Art, BM English Watercolours, no. 99
1991 Mar-June, N Carolina Mus of Art, BM English Watercolours, no. 99
1992 Sept-Nov, New Haven, Yale Center Brit Art, 'Victorian Landscape Watercolours', no.80
1992-1993 Nov-Jan, Ohio, Cleveland Museum, 'Victorian Landscape Watercolours', no.80
1993 Feb-Apr, Birmingham Art Gallery, 'Victorian Landscape Watercolours', no.80
1994-1995 Sept-Jan, BM, Pre-Raphaelite Drawings, no.95
2004 Feb-May, London, Tate Britain, 'Pre-Raphaelite Vision: Truth to Nature', no.148
2004 June-Sept, Berlin, Altes Nationalgalerie, 'Pre-Raphaelite Vision: Truth to Nature', no.
2004-2005 Oct-Jan, Madrid, Fundació "la Caixa", 'Pre-Rapahaelite Vision: Truth to Nature', no.
2017 23 Feb-27 Aug, London, BM, G90, Places of the Mind: British Landscape watercolours 1850-1950
- Acquisition date
- Prints and Drawings
- Registration number