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In our last, we complained of the give them their proper effect. Those attractive glare of modern exhibitions, who think that bright blues, bright and compared their force upon the reds, and bright yellows, as little sight to the magnetic mountain that mixed as may be, will give them drew the nails out of Sinbad's ship. power, greatly err; for as they have That in this lies a fault of our Eng. a limited, so have they a poor palette. lish painters, we entertain not the And they who think they can make up slightest doubt. They begin upon too for the force which a nice distinction high a scale, and there is not the due of half-tone, and the opposition of proportion of half-tones in their works. cool and warm, in indefinite degrees, They aim at force, we think, by wrong and relatively in all colours, would means--the greatest contrast of crude give them, by splashes of asphaltum colours, and of extreme dark opposed and black in juxtaposition to crude to extreme light. It is similar to the white or yellow, are like the ranters practice in much of our modern music, on the stage, who overact their parts --it wants the half-tone: there is too throughout, for lack of the nice dismuch of the bang-bang, and the higher, crimination of the delicate lights and brilliant, and sometimes scarce audible shades of character, which mostly, notes. The very term “ brilliant," in after all, blend themselves with human music, has been borrowed from the sympathies. The eye of the painter sister art; but in neither art is the true and of the public becomes vitiated by brilliancy thus obtained: true brilliancy false colouring-it loses its power of is not mere light that may be opaque; nice distinction. We have heard picit is from within, and deep, and per
tures called monotonous and colourvading to the upper surface; it is the less which have in them ten times whole luminous contexture, as of pre. more varieties and gradations than cious stones. It throws out light from those which have been praised for itself, and is the more beautiful as all colour. It is easy at one glance to other light about it is subdued. Such see the crude and positive; but the was and such is the luminous quality undefined, the nameless, yet thoroughof the pictures by Titian, and by Cor- ly effective, mostly lying in the more reggio; and in landscape of Claude hidden magic of half-tone, court not and of Poussin, and indeed more or the attention of eyes that do not haless of every master of the old schools bitually take much of their sense from of great name and fame. And un judgment and feeling. We discard questionably Sir Joshua Reynolds and too much the power of quietness, the founders of the English school which is great, and often greatest, as did aim at giving to their pictures means of rendering violence more this quality. We have, since their violent. There can be nothing grand day, been continually deserting their that shall not have in it something of practice. They, that is, the old Ve- repose; and there is something in renetian, the Italian, and the earlier pose which is always great. When English, did not think that good Virgil makes his Laocoon bellow like colouring consisted in laying on the a bull, we have little more sympathy canvass as much crude blue, red, and for the Priest of Neptune than for the yellow, as possible, and in forcible brute. The silence, the repose of sufcontrast, but in the blending and ju- fering would have better dignified the dicious use of the mixed colours—tints priest; when he roars, he
even bethat it is sometimes difficult to define, low ourselves, for we fancy we could and give a name to, that yet have an
bear inconceivable and matchless grace and « Clamores simul horrendos ad sidera beauty. Power we conceive to consist in this, in the being able to multi. Quales mugitus, fugit cum saucius aram ply, by combination, colours which, Taurus, et incertam excussit cervice as they are in a great measure the securim." creation of the worker, and through We think, then, that a great part of him only made perceptible, are with the fatigue of which the visiters to our out names. Here is the power of the exbibitions complain, is to be attripalette--the genius of the painter will buted to that false principle of colour
ing adopted by our painters, which bright though he be, and his crisped discards repose, and which aims at mantle floats and flickers in the air, it a glare and vividness and too high is not with too sudden and vivid lights. Let any one walk across from flash of light or of colour—the lovelithe Academical Exhibition to the ness of the repose of that golden age National Gallery to be convinced that may not be so violently broken in this fault does exist, and is not the ne. upon. You perceive that the will cessary effect of an exhibition. It is and vigorous action of the God Bactrue the National Gallery has not so chus are fully characterised without many pictures; but still it is not a such disturbance. There is the allmatter of more or less fatigue, but joyous bachanalian company, and the there is a positive refreshment to the young triumphant fawn.god trailing eye and mind in quitting the one set the mountain victim's head-all in low of rooms for the other.
We mean tones, and yet would you say that all not to assert that all the pictures in is not joyous ? There is no effort to the one gallery are good, any more bring out any thing by forced conthan we do that all in the other are trast. The young fawn-god, so globad-but that in general the opposing rious, is not made conspicuous; his principles upon which both those of character is in his air and attitude, his one and the other were painted are position, and his doing, not forced into manifest. Now, while in the Na- observation by blues, and reds, and tional Gallery, let us seek the cause of high lights—it is in fact all in shade. this general effect by adverting to one And what an indescribable colour is or two pictures. We will take the the sky and distance !- the sky is not most gorgeous—for gorgeous painting blue, as we call blue, yet what azure is what we aim at; let us look at the more beauteous, and the light Bacchus and Ariadne of Titian; and clouds, how deep they are! The whole for landscape, the embarkation of St picture is perfectly fabulous, poetically Ursula. These are works of the fabulous, and so made by the pervagreatest richness of colouring. If you ding subdued tones. We are in the have not practised your eye, you will habit of bearing Titian spoken of as scarcely believe how much of these a great colourist. He was so, it is pictures is half tone, how little of po- true ; but he was much more-he was sitive unmixed colour is in them, and great as a composer. Nothing can that in neither of them is an atom of be more effective than his manner of our high lights. Try by this test-to telling a story. His grouping is perthe brightest and lightest parts hold fect; and so the action of his indivi. a piece of white paper, imagine you dual figures. Now, let us look at the. see only that colour against which Claude. « The embarkation of St Uryou place it, as if it were on your sula." And let all flimsy flashy land. palette ; you would perhaps call it scape painters, that would paint the dirty; you would say it could not be warm sun by raw flake wbite, or bright; remove your paper, go to the chrome yellow, blush for their ignoproper distance, and what do you see? rance, not knowing how all this lumi. that it is bright, luminous, and clear: nous effect is made by subdued tones. try in like manner all the tones, and Put your white paper against the then examine the manner of the glaz- sun, or any other part of the sky. ing, and you will find how the whole How deep it is!-this is no mere surpower is effected. We give these two face painting, there is nothing crude ; subjects, because they possess, what it and could you cut out an inch of this is supposed we mostly strive to ac- luminous sky, and show it as a sample, quire, gorgeous brilliancy and air. it would do about as well as the brick The atmosphere in the Titian is quite did for the house. Show it where of the “golden age," when gods you will, few would believe that was might walk the earth- the earth en- part of a clear luminous sky. But riched and under a glory fit to receive look at the picture as a whole, and such visitants, and why not call it the mark how wonderfully bright-bril. poetical glory? All the landscape, liant, if you like the word better-it sky, and background, are in repose, is. Then you will observe there is repose yet luminous, throwing out, no flashy colouring, no affected force even from the depths, their own lights. to make the figures tell—they are all The action of the godhead, in his vio-- in half tone. If painters, who follow lence, has yet its repose of confidence ; another method, throw nature in your
teeth, ask them if nature was ever atque artium scientiam consecutus,” more happily imitated, as a whole, and M. T. Cicero, De Oratore, lib. 1. A in parts, than in this picture. It would more stupid motto they could not well be easy enough to go through all the have chosen, nor one that has less to genuine pictures in this national col- do with the arts, words that come in lection; they would not tell a different with an omnium gatherum knowledge tale. Let these two suffice. Nor to make up-what? not a painter, not will we, as many do, rob those great a connoisseur, but a special pleader! masters of their real merit, by the as- It is a good motto enough for tickets sertion, that time has done for them should the Polytechnic Company think what was the work of their own minds fit to invite the learned profession to a and hands. It is an invidious thing dinner. to take away from intention what is The public, too, we are sorry to good, and to give it to accident, to observe, do not expect to be made time. Let not those whose perform- perfect orators by frequenting this ances are now crude, flatter them- exhibition, or they care little for the selves that time is gifted with Titian's acquirement ; for when we visited it, pencils, and will turn clay into a jewel. there were not more than three per
It is melancholy to walk through sons present, nor did they at any the National Gallery, and to see it in time that we were in the rooms, some pretty much the same state, year after hours, amount to above six. Who year. Are there none to cater for can say we want painters? In this the public? Are pictures not to be appendix to the Academy we have no had, that no additions are made ? less than 783 pictures, and 21 pieces An amateur asked us to point out of sculpture. Here too, as in the the texture in Ruysdael; we took him Academy, the pyramid system is purto the National Gallery-in vain. We sued-works piled upon works; and, are not aware that there is one pic. absurdly enough, the minute are out ture of the master ; and there is Berg- of sight. We have marked in the hem—why not have a few works of catalogue but few pictures, because these painters? We remember to have they are for the most part a shade seen, within these few years, several inferior to those of their class in the pictures of these masters, very good, other exhibition ; and there is the abthat were in the market. Again, we sence of any very imposing work to ask, is there no one to cater for the engage attention. There is, howpublic ? Not that we mean to confine ever, a great deal of what is good in our, or rather the public, desires to painting, in execution particularly ; any one or more masters. Many in- but there seems to be no attempt to deed are wanted—we would rather surpass their neighbours in the poetry say purchase good pictures, little of art. And yet the very first piccaring for schools, whenever or where ture, No. 4, is poetical—“ Duncan's ever they are to be met with. Do Horses.” J. F. Herring, sen. not let the nation be more parsimo- “ Here Duncan's horses (a thing most . pious than private collectors. But it
strange and certain) is absurd to draw comparisons. The Beauteous and swift, the minions of the nation are not competitors in any race, purchase. When they bought the Turn’d wild in nature, broke their stalls, Francias they bought what no one flung out, else would buy. Who attends sales Contending 'gainst obedience, as they for the public gallery ? Our business would make is, however, now with exhibitions as War with mankind." -- Macbeth. they are. And as the National does No. 16. “ Duncan's horses." J. not progress, it does not now come F. Herring, senior. "'Tis said they eat under our further notice.
each other.”-Macbeth. In the first, It is a great convenience the having the noble steeds are breaking forth our exhibitions contiguous to each from a gothic archway, and are in other. It is but a few steps from the truth turned wild in nature; and the Academy to the Suffolk Street gallery, scenery is wild enough for them. We the Society of British Artists. This could have wished the architecture less society, too, is ambitious of a motto- conspicuous. We would follow them “ Ac mea quidem sententia, nemo in their furious speed—can we do so poterit esse omni laude cumulatus ora- only in imagination ?-the second pictor, nisi erit omnium rerum magnaruniture shows them in their extreme con
flict. This is the best of the two; the nature, the water is excellent-it is perlandscape is finely suited to their deed haps a little too blue. of madness. It is deep, dark, and No. 90. “ The Madonna, Infant gloomy, the gleaming lights are indi- Christ, and St John, painted in encative of danger-the poetical action caustic, resembling fresco, discover. of the animals is excellent-and we ed by the artist.” E. Latilla.-Bedo not doubt Mr Herring's accuracy fore reading this description in the as an animal painter. Mr Herring catalogue, we had remarked that it has nine pictures, all more or less ex- was painted in a bad material ; and if hibiting his talent. The most im- Mr Latilla's “real fresco, No. 678," portant, perhaps, is No. 240, “ Going be the best we can reach, we do not to Fair." Here three fine horses are desire to see our houses of Parliament being led to the fair; one is “throw- decorated in this manner. Mr Har ing out,” and all are rather gay, and lestone appears this year generally to not ashamed to look any purchaser in have failed in colour, particularly in the face-to the right a lane leads to the flesh. He seems to have been a quiet village, in which are a few aiming at the disagreeable fuzzy unfigures preparing for the fair—a stage- certain manner of Murillo. coach well loaded, is on the road No. 116. “ The Evening Walk.” meeting the horses going to fair; to W. W. Scott.— We were so struck by the left are sheep in a field--the road the simple, unaffected, yet natural look goes directly off into a flat distance. of this picture, that we were curious There is a mass of tall, well-painted to learn something of the artist, and trees above the horses, and which make understand he is very young, and has the landscape. The distance, and the not painted many pictures. He is sky towards the horizon, are not quite then of great promise-for the whole true to nature, especially the sky, which management is very good very is too flat. The whole scene is very powerful, yet with much delicacynatural we would not say that it is the colouring is effective and harmomost agreeable nature; but, for its nious. It would be improved by the aim, the picture is very good. Mr light in the sky towards the horizon Herring's “ Mazeppa," No. 521, is being scumbled over and kept down. at least of more poetical pretension. The error of young painters, and too It is very good-well composed-the often of old, is affectation, more espe. group of wild horses in wonderment cially in portraits—there is none of it at Mazeppa bound to the falling here. Mr Scott will assuredly become horse, is fine. The landscape is, in one of our best portrait-painters. fact, well designed, but too coldly No. 259, and No. 271. E. Prentiscoloured; and the extreme distance each a Passage in the Life of Manwants connexion with the sweeping “ He goeth forth," “ He returneth," line of the hills on the right-and as are well-conceived, amusing pictures in the other picture, does not recede, of their kind. The going forth steady, and the sky there is flat. If every with advice duly given, to a dinner, part of his No. 401, “ The Countess and the returning unsteady, are well of Derby's departure from Martindale contrasted, so that they should be Castle,” were equal to the centre group, companions. The likeness of the alwhich is beautifully designed and col- tered man is very well preserved. oured, we should prefer that picture No. 264, “ Ehrenbreitstein on the to his others.
Rbine,” C. F. Tornkins, as a view, No. 61. “ Leith Hill, Surrey." J. is very good, and is free from the Wallen-is good.
common fault of our view-painters' No. 69. “ Hebe." J. P. Davis.
J. P. Davis. views_places have their disgusting asThough the Hebe has too much of pects, which, for the sake of doing the modern mode for the fabulous something they have determined to be Hebe, she has a pretty and expressive artistical or picturesque, our place- . face, which would be better set off, if painters perpetuate. the blue or grey of the sky were No. 279.“ A Fruit Girl of North brought down a little lower. It is a Holland at her devotions," J. Zeitter, mistake to carry the flesh colour into is very pretty, very pleasing, both in the sky, unless it differ greatly in its character, and in the manner of the tone.
painting. No. 80. “ Sea View- Fresh breeze." No. 295. “ Shoreham, Sussex M. E. Colman. This is very true to Coast." J. B. Pyne,- Mr Pyre is a
This is a very
very clever artist, his pencilling is No.393. “The Chapel of the Virgin clean, and with precision; but we in the Jesuits' Church, Antwerp.” E. fear this very excellence leads him into Hassell. - Mr Hassell is original-he a fault. His pictures are apt to be too seizes the character of his interiors unsubstantial, too weak both in body with great truth and power; he seems and in colour. This is certainly a to forget art, while he is unconsciouswell-painted picture, but it is cold, ly practising it most skilfully. He uncomfortably so, in colour; it is not aims at no forced effects---consequentthe most agreeable atmosphere under ly his scenes have just that quiet rewhich we would see a place which pose, even in their light, that ever faswe should wish to remember. Most cinates the spectator. They are of Mr Pyne's pictures have the faults lighted by their own sanctity. We we have mentioned. They are con- feel sure that the scene we behold was spicuous in his No. 437, “ Pheasants' painted on the spot. Nests at Cheddar." It is a fine scene beautiful picture. _Nor is his “ Vanof stupendous rocks, which should dyke visiting the Tomb of Rubens, in have been, by the by, his subject; he the Church of St Jacques," less so. has too much divided it by being too The introduction of Vandyke is very near the nests, and is therefore com- judicious--the figure is good. It aspelled to paint too nicely the unpic. sists contemplation, which makes the turesque cottages, the “ nests.” The character of the scene.
There are no composition is fine; the whole has pictures in this exhibition that, for little colour, and is too weak. How our own taste, we so much covet as solemnly such a scene should be treated Mr Hassell's interiors. We shall to convey the character, which over- look for him again. His manner of powers minor detail and triflingincident representing the white stone under - yet has Mr Pyne injured the charac. subdued light is perfect. He reconter, by the introduction of groups of ciles the eye even to some matters of figures, vile in themselves, and which, not the best taste in architecture. by their colour, render the whole pic. There are some good drawings. We ture weaker. · There are figures, chil- we were pleased with No. 656, “ Near dren in a boat, and one, as it appears, Beddgelleret, North Wales," J. Ri. crying, and trying to wade to its com- deo ; and 659, “ London from Waterpanions—now how unworthy is this loo Bridge," W. C. Smith, which of so grand scenery! There is an un- would bear a little more depth. accountable suddenness in the colour of Looking over the catalogue, we find reddish brown rock immediately upon
we have omitted the notice of No. the grey. There are two words we 117, “ At Entretat on the Coast of wish Mr Pyne would remember when- Normandy, with a brig coming ashore ever he has his palette in band—“depth," _stormy—sunset.”
H. Lanaster. “colour"-not as one, but distinct. This is a bold scene, and the event We know he is capable of doing described is of great interest. It is higher and better things.
very powerful in effect-the light upNo. 241. “ Study of a Head.” C. on the rocks very true and forcible. Baxter. This is very good, but we The red is perhaps a little overdonethink a little fails in the flesh colour. the foreground is the least good, is
No. 315. « The Friar and Juliet,” too much cut up, and there are either J. S. Spencer, is certainly very like na- too many figures, or they are too near, ture, and it is well managed, artistically near enough to divide the interest with speaking, but how unpoetically dismal, the principal incident. We are reand that is ever out of the pathetic. minded of Loutherbourg, but there is
No. 329. Farm Horses." C. not Loutherbourg's power. We must Jose. This is a group of horses well quit the Suffolk Street gallery, aware set off ; the sky is admirably formed to of the impossibility of offering a satismake up the composition. The ground factory critique; as many good pictures, is not good in colour. This would, where there are so many, must necesas a composition, engrave-as a pic- sarily be without the notice they ture, it is not quite pleasing from its merit. texture it is too uniformly smooth, There are two societies of painters wants variety, and is perhaps a little in water colours. The last embodied too vivid ; it should be subdued, and entitles itself “ The New." This conthe several objects should have their tains 341 drawings--the first establishe own texture.
ed, 338. In quantity, they are nearly