Sunday, May 18, 2008

Marianne Stokes

Marianne Stokes 1855 - 1927
Madonna and Child 1907-8
Tempera on board 80 cm (31.5 in.),x 59.5 cm (23.43 in.)
Wolverhampton Art Gallery

Marianne Stokes (Marianne Preindlsberger) (1855-1927) was born in Graz, Austria.

She studied under Wilhelm von Lindenschmidt in Munich

In 1884, while painting in Brittany at Pont-Avon, she met and later married British artist Adrian Stokes. The couple moved to St Ives and both became leading figures in the art colony there. Together they travelled throughout Europe

In the 1890's she steadily moved towards religious subjects. A strong spirituality pervades her later works.

She won a medal at the 1893 Exposition.

She was considered one of the leading women artists in Britain

In 1923 she became an associate of the Royal Society of Painters in Water Colours.

She exhibited in London with these bodies as well as at the Royal Academy, Royal Institute of Oil Painters, Fine Art Society, Grosvenor Gallery, New Gallery and Royal Society of British Artists

She abandoned oils towards the turn of the century in favour of tempera painting. She associated the use of tempera with the purity and simplicity of an earlier art. She said: ‘It seems to me a medium which lends itself most to spirituality, sincerity and purity of colour’.

In 2005, the Royal Mail used one of her paintings "Madonna and Child" for the First Class Christmas stamp. More than 200 million 1st Class stamps were printed. Because of this the Art Gallery brought the painting out of storage.

Painted in Regusa on the Dalmatian coast in Italy around 1907-8, Stokes used a local village girl to model as the Holy Mother. The costume is representative of a traditional Dalmatian costume from the time

Stokes died in London. She did not have any children.