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© Birmingham Museums and Art Gallery
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|Collection:||Fine Art Paintings and Sculpture|
|Date:||1840 - 1890|
|Artist:||Sophie Anderson - View biography for Sophie Anderson|
Sophie Anderson was one of the most successful women artists of her day, specialising in portraiture and scenes of everyday, domestic life.Here a group of country children are reading from a story book. They are poor, judging by the holes in the boy's socks, but happy. True to stereotype, the boy makes mischief while his more passive female companions either read or listen to the story. One of them holds a baby an adopts a supervisory maternal stance. She is part of an extended rustic family and will no doubt one day become mother of a large family herself. The continuation of the status quo seems assured.This sunlit scene of childhood merriment contains the essential ingredients of the nineteenth century rustic idyll: the association of the English countryside with innocence and old-fashioned values. The formula was popular in an age of rapid industrialisation.
|Bequeathed by Mrs. Turton, 1892.|
|Production Period:||19th century|
|Medium:||Oil on canvas.|