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Edward John Poynter



Edward John Poynter
Paris 1836 – London 1919




About 1870


Oil on canvas


40.6 x 33.7 cm


William John and Agnes Learmont Bequest, inv. 1909.588


Western Art

Although less ambitious in scale and composition than the depictions of Graeco-Roman life on which Edward John Poynter established his reputation, this exquisite painting demonstrates the qualities for which his work was appreciated, which included an adept depiction of surfaces and the contrasts between them, exemplified here in the marble column, the girl’s face and the copper pot hanging from her wrist. The subject of Cinderella was a popular one among the artist’s contemporaries, including a well-known version by his brother-in-law, Edward Burne-Jones. Despite his obvious talents, Poynter’s reputation early in his career, when he was counted among the more talented and progressive artists of his generation, has been overshadowed by his long-standing service as the president of the Royal Academy of Arts (1898-1918), and his disdain for the modern painting techniques of the Impressionists.

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