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Sir Alfred James Munnings, P.R.A., R.W.S. (British, 1878-1959)
Sir Alfred James Munnings, P.R.A., R.W.S. (British, 1878-1959)

Polstead Church, Suffolk

Sir Alfred James Munnings, P.R.A., R.W.S. (British, 1878-1959) Polstead Church, Suffolk signed 'A. J. Munnings' (lower right) oil on board 13 ¾ x 17 ¾ in. (34.9 x 45.1 cm.)
with Arthur Ackermann and Son, Ltd., London.
Acquired from the above and thence by descent.

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Lot Essay

Buildings of any kind are a rarity in Munnings's oeuvre with the few exceptions when he was painting scenes at racetracks or stable yards and then they feature only subtly. Of pictures known of churches there are only Dedham, Mendham, Luccombe, Morston (near Blakeney, Norfolk) and Polstead. During his time as an apprentice to a Norwich firm of lithographers, he would frequently spend free time on his bicycle, wandering in and out of churches, 'with a friend from the School of Art, on bicycles ... did I cover the face of Norfolk. We must have seen the inside of every church, and as my friend was studying stained-glass design, as well as architecture, our jaunts were full of interest' (A. J. Munnings, An Artist's Life, Bungay, 1950, p. 52).

We are grateful to Lorian Peralta-Ramos for her help in preparing this catalogue entry. The painting will be included in her forthcoming catalogue raisonné of the work of Sir Alfred Munnings.


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