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Painting - John Clements Conducting a Rehearsal of 'Pygmalion' by George Bernard Shaw
  • John Clements Conducting a Rehearsal of 'Pygmalion' by George Bernard Shaw
    Irving, Laurence, born 1897 - died 1988
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John Clements Conducting a Rehearsal of 'Pygmalion' by George Bernard Shaw

  • Object:

    Painting

  • Place of origin:

    Great Britain (probably, painted)

  • Date:

    1972 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Irving, Laurence, born 1897 - died 1988 (artist)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Oil on canvas

  • Credit Line:

    Given by Laurence Irving

  • Museum number:

    S.1116-1983

  • Gallery location:

    Theatre & Performance, Room 106, case 5A, shelf 1

Laurence Irving (1897-1988), grandson of the actor Henry Irving, trained at the Royal Academy and became an artist and set designer, working in the theatre and for films. Irving designed the sets for George Bernard Shaw's play Pygmalion when it was staged at the St James's Theatre in 1953. He painted his picture of a rehearsal in 1972, working from sketches made at the time. The play was directed by the actor-manager John Clements, who also played Professor Henry Higgins. His wife, Kay Hammond, was Eliza Doolittle.

The painting shows stage hands setting the scenery for Professor Higgins's sitting room. Irving painted himself in the picture: he is the figure in painter's overalls standing in the stalls. John Clements is sitting in the front row; his assistant, taking notes, is on his left. At the front of the stage, shielding his eyes from the lights, is stage manager Harry Fine. In the right hand corner is the theatre cleaner who, according to the artist, vacuumed the carpet regardless of rehearsals.

Physical description

Auditorium of a theatre, with stage hands moving scenery on stage. A male figure in a yellow jacket stands at front of stage shielding his eyes from the light. Sitting in the stalls two male figures, with a third standing in the row behind. In the right hand corner a woman vacuuming the carpet.

Place of Origin

Great Britain (probably, painted)

Date

1972 (made)

Artist/maker

Irving, Laurence, born 1897 - died 1988 (artist)

Materials and Techniques

Oil on canvas

Marks and inscriptions

Monogram and date
Bottom right hand corner

Dimensions

Height: 51 cm, Width: 76.2 cm

Descriptive line

Painting entitled "John Clements conducting a rehearsal of 'Pygmalion' by George Bernard Shaw" by Laurence Irving, 1972.

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Ashton, Geoffrey. Catalogue of Paintings at the Theatre Museum, London. ed. James Fowler, London : Victoria and Albert Museum, 1992. 224p. ill. ISBN 1851771026

Categories

Paintings

Collection

Theatre and Performance Collection

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