Frederick Morgan, R.O.I. (1847-1927)
Frederick Morgan, R.O.I. (1847-1927)


Frederick Morgan, R.O.I. (1847-1927)
signed 'Fred Morgan' (lower left)
oil on canvas
36¼ x 28 in. (92.1 x 71.1 cm.)
London, The Royal Academy, 1889, no. 474.
Manchester, The Corporation of Manchester Art Gallery, 1889, no. 96.

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Lot Essay

Painted in 1889, this work marks the beginning of Morgan's most
successful period of production. Towards the end of the century
Morgan's colours became more intensely saturated, and there is a
bravado to his brushwork which suits his subjects. Here Morgan focuses on two children, which after the success of this picture he started to do more frequently. Often the title of the picture will indicate their activity: All Gathered (exhibited in the RA at 1891) and Mother's Birthday (1892) are particularly pertinent as the protagonists reach out to pick fruit or flowers.

This work compliments Morgan's exhibit at the Institute of Painters in Oil of the same year. The Fairest Blossom depicted two girls
collecting rose blossoms, posed similarly to this pair. Morgan often
sought to represent the ingenuity of children, either in their own games or in their versions of adult activities. Here we see the taller girl shaking the branches so that her fair-haired companion catches the loosened hazlenuts in her apron.

This picture was hung on the line during its Royal Academy exhibition, a place of honour. Further proof of its universal appeal was its reproduction, as a large colour chromolithograph print, which
accompanied the Christmas issue of The Pictorial World magazines.
It was also engraved for the Illustrated London News in 1889.

We are grateful to Terry Parker for his help in preparing this catalogue entry.

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