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Drawing - View at East Bergholt over the kitchen garden of Golding Constable's house
  • View at East Bergholt over the kitchen garden of Golding Constable's house
    John Constable, born 1776 - died 1837
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View at East Bergholt over the kitchen garden of Golding Constable's house

  • Object:

    Drawing

  • Place of origin:

    Great Britain (drawn)

  • Date:

    ca. 1812-1816 (drawn)

  • Artist/Maker:

    John Constable, born 1776 - died 1837 (artist)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Pencil on paper

  • Credit Line:

    Bequeathed by Isabel Constable, daughter of the artist

  • Museum number:

    623-1888

  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

Constable's characteristic use of zigzag shading is very much in evidence in this large and densely worked pencil drawing. He shows people working in his father’s kitchen garden to the right, and there is a cowherd to the left.

Constable had a life-long and rather nostalgic interest in agricultural work. He saw it as a 'natural' and satisfying employment. In fact, by the time that Constable was practising as an artist, traditional rural life had changed dramatically. Before the mid 18th century, land was usually farmed in strips that were owned by different individuals. With enclosure, these strips were reorganised into fields surrounded by hedges or fences. You can see this clearly in the background of the drawing. This was an expensive process. It meant that many poorer farmers were forced to sell their strips to wealthy landowners. Common land disappeared, so they could no longer graze their animals. Consequently, many moved to the new industrial towns and cities in order to survive.

Physical description

Very detailed sketch of a farmhouse with fields.

Place of Origin

Great Britain (drawn)

Date

ca. 1812-1816 (drawn)

Artist/maker

John Constable, born 1776 - died 1837 (artist)

Materials and Techniques

Pencil on paper

Marks and inscriptions

J WHATMAN 1811
J RUSE 1804
Mr. Constable
From the Garden

Dimensions

Height: 302 mm, Width: 449 mm

Historical context note

In 1819 Constable exhibited at the Royal Academy 'A scene on the River Stour' ('The White Horse'), bought by John Fisher, and now in the Frick Collection, New York (see the sketch-book No. 132, pp. 66 and 70). His second child Maria Louisa (Minna) was born on 19 July. He took a house at Hampstead for the first time at the end of the summer. He was elected A.R.A. on 1 November.

[G Reynolds, 1973, p. 121]

Descriptive line

John Constable, 'View at East Bergholt over the kitchen garden of Golding Constable's house', c.1812-16, Reynolds cat. no. 176

Subjects depicted

Kitchen gardens; Landscape

Categories

Drawings; Gardens & Gardening

Collection

Prints, Drawings & Paintings Collection

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