Study of a female figure
silverpoint on prepared paper
1058 x 514 in. (27 x 13.3 cm.)
The artist, and by descent to his wife.
Probably her sale; Edwards, Son, & Bigwood and Mathews, 23 March or 6 April 1948, lot number untraced.
with Richard Ivor, London.
Special notice
Please note this lot is the property of a consumer. See H1 of the Conditions of Sale.
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Lot Essay

Joseph Southall is perhaps best known for his use of and enthusiasm for the medium of tempera. Fascinated by 'craftsmanship', he took up the notoriously difficult medium of tempera as he felt it demanded a more thorough understanding and craft than painting in oil or watercolour. However, alongside this, he also experimented in the equally rigorous technique of silverpoint. Used as a drawing method in Renaissance, silverpoint had largely fallen out of favour by Southall's lifetime due to it's unforgiving nature and expense. The paper must be prepared with a gesso, before a soft silver stylus is used to leave a mark on the paper. Southall here shows his mastery of this difficult medium, his line strong and confident.

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