DETAIL : John Singer SARGENT, The fountain, Villa Torlonia, Frascati, Italy 1907, The Art Institute of Chicago, American Art Collection DETAIL : John Singer SARGENT, Almina, daughter of Asher Wertheimer 1908, Tate, London, presented by the widow and family of Asher Wertheimer in accordance with his wishes in 1922
Left Arrow Graphic Gallery

VIEW BY GALLERY : | Entrance | 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | AUDIO TOUR | ALL

The artist and the nude

An inconsistent and prurient puritanism has succeeded in evolving an ideal
which it seeks to dignify by calling it the Nude, with a capital N, and placing
it in opposition to the naked.

Walter Sickert ‘The Naked and the Nude’ in The New Age (1910)

Throughout the 19th century artists used traditional themes to elevate their subjects. They created images that referenced classical ideals, placing nudes within a ‘perfect’ world.

During the Edwardian era artists scrutinised their own image in self-portraits and began painting nudes in everyday settings. Walter Sickert depicted aspects of life that his contemporaries would have preferred not to have seen: a shameful world where prostitutes lived in squalid bed-sits in the North London area of Camden Town, notorious for the murders that took place there.

NGA Home | Introduction | Gallery | Search | Essay | Learning | Symposium | Visiting | Previous