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James Wood (1889-1975):
Washing Line, circa 1930
Mounted (ref: 5707)
Watercolour and pastel-crayon
15 x 22 in. (38 x 56 cm.)
Provenance: Jas Woods daughter; thence by descent.
Literature: Tate Etc, issue 7, summer 2006, "Every Work of Art is a Child of its Time..."
The medium of this drawing is watercolour, and pastel, the latter used in the form of a pastel crayon much favoured by the artist.
Throughout his artistic and literary career Jas Wood sought to define beauty. With fellow authors C. K Ogden and I. A. Richards he wrote The Foundation of Aesthetics (1922) and following this Colour Harmony, in which he explored colour as a language in its own right. He had a deep admiration for Kandinsky and at this time owned an important early work by the artist.
Wood was featured in Adrian Glew's article on the influence of Kandinsky on British Art:
"Whilst most of these artists moved on to different ends - Nevinson would launch the Futurist manifesto with Marinette several months later - the most specific, enduring, yet least known influence of Kandinsky on British artists at that time was on James Wood. He had absorbed the lessons on colour theory, particularly those establishing correspondences between colour and musical tones, when studying at Percyval-Hart's art school in Paris in 1909, .... . These views were mirrored in Wood's own paintings, where the colour correspondences serve specific functions and where the image vibrates and resonates beyond the canvas."
An oil painting by Wood is in the collection of the Yale Centre for British Art.
We are grateful to Maisie Hill for assistance