Art Wednesday

Emma Sandys: British painter born 1843 died at the aged of 34 in 1877. 

Born in Norwich in 1843, Emma was taught to paint by her father and she began to exhibit from 1867 onwards (though her earliest known painting is dated 1863). Emma, during her career, exhibited portraits and female heads in oil supplemented by chalk drawings of the same subjects. Sandys attracted a considerable number of commissions for child portraits and was able to produce compelling character studies within this traditionally un-respected genre. Her last exhibition was in 1874. She died in Norwich in 1877.  Very limited information is available on Emma or her sibling Frederick.

Her brother Anthony Frederick Sandys (1829-1904) was also a painter and I have included 3 of his works -  when you compare brother and sister you will see the influences of the Pre-Raphaelite movement (a movement neither joined).  Their style was very similar - in particular the eyes and hair.    I find the eyes to have a far-away dreamy look, leaving the viewer wondering what these women were thinking.

"Fiammetta" by Emma Sandys
"La belle giroflée jaune" by Emma Sandys (1865)
 "Elaine" by Emma Sandys (1862-5)
"A fashionable lady"by Emma Sandys

  Anthony Frederick Sandys (Emma's brother)
"Grace Rose" (I particularly love this one)

By Winifred Sandys (1875-1944) – Emma's niece and Frederick's daughter

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  1. What amazing, beautiful detail! These are absolutely gorgeous Jo. The one with the long curly hair just amazed me... I wonder how the artist did the hair! Such talent was in this family for sure...

  2. The details are great, but I have to admit that this is not my favourite style of painting. I can appreciate the talent though! :)

  3. Very feminine and "dreamy". I like your favourite one too. I think it is a little more realistic and earthy. I am no artist so I go completely on what appeals and not by technique or style.

  4. Jo,

    I really enjoyed this collection of paintings. I agree with you in regards to the eyes in these portraits looking "far away and dreamy," but the portraits still possess feminine beauty and charm.

    It's too bad that Emma died at such a young age.

    -Lady Rose

  5. I like your favourite too ~ but I'm a big fan of the pre~raphelites. I like the unearthly quality & the dreamscapes. These are lovely ~ like all the painters you exhibit. Thank you once again.

  6. Lady Rose - I tried to find out why Emma died so young but simply there isn't any information. I assume that once she died she went out of favour and no one was interested enough in her to collate some information on her life. There is also very little on her brother—so they aren’t considered the big name artists.

  7. The hair is pretty amazing. I went and had another look and I agree with you -it must have taken ages to paint.

  8. Beautiful work. There is a sense of mystery about these women and one DOES wonder what they are thinking...especially the woman in
    Grace Rose. I like her eyes, so lifelike the way the brow hangs over the lid.

    Thank you again. My children and I come to your site every Wednesday now. We are so thankful for the research you do and the works you is our own little art school. Many blessings and thank you for your efforts.

  9. Jo~ would it be o.k. if I posted a link to your Art Wednesdays on my blog?

  10. Mrs Santos - no problems at all. Thankyou so much for you kind words and I am thrilled that your children also enjoy them:)



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