OIL PAINTING: Startled, 1892
Mr Frank Dicksee only exhibits two oil paintings in 1892. One is his Diploma picture-a comparatively small but most carefully painted work, to which he has given the title Startled. It represents two girls by the bank of a river surprised by a boat which turns the corner of a distant bend just as they are about to bathe. They turn hastily away, the younger a very pretty child, hand in hand with her elder sister. Above them a Spanish chestnut-tree, and the deep red hair of the elder girl seen against its leaves and caught by the half sunlight which illumines the river and plays beneath the branches makes a charming contrast of light and colour. The foreground of Startled consists of grass and flowers and on the right a blossoming rose most elaborately painted. In giving this to the Academy, Mr Dicksee has given of his best, which is not always the rule with the painters of Diploma paintings . His second painting is much larger, and of a rather new type for Mr Dicksee. It represents an Eastern beauty half recumbent on a couch, and dressed in a gorgeous robe of rose-coloured silk and gold embroidery. Around and about her is a profusion of Oriental draperies of richest colour, and a tall tiger lily stands on the floor beside the couch. All this gives the artist a fine opportunity of colour composition, which he has used to the full. Dicksee is also starting another large subject-picture for next year, and has already completed a water-colour sketch for it.