Litkicks Message Board Archive

URGENT unknown Stephens painting found- need help!

Posted to WritersAndGenres

Dear People, I need your help and knowledge. I am an antique dealer in Australia, I deal in Australian Ceramics only, I found an old painting in an antique shop recently and I believe it was painted by Frederic George Stephens of the Raphaelite Movement in the mid 1800's in London. You will of course need photos for your perusal email me for these and they will be sent immediatley- ( I believe this painting to be historically and artistically important to the Art World. It may be that there is no record of this painting but I am now checking the Archives of articles about the Raphaelite Movement in old newspapers and I may find a record of it.

The painting measures 15 7/8's x 27 inches. (403mmx 682mm). It is in the original Alabaster old gold gilt frame similar to the frame (almost identical) that was used for "Triumph of the Innocents" by William Holman Hunt a fellow Raphaelite and much better painter. the canvas is streteched over a wood frame and the painting floats in the frame via 4 screws and eyelets. It is an oil painting, I beleive the subject to be Eleanor Elizabeth Siddal (Rossini's eventual wife) around 1850, she is dressed poorly and is knitting, she has red hair, she is standing near a cottage, probably Stephens'. The painting itself is poor, as you know Stephens was a poor painter and eventually gave up to become a writer and art critic. He stopped painting at around age 20-22. I have seen some of his work, although unsigned. This has the initials back to front? G.F. Stephens. The wooden frame for the canvas is "blocked" together with little wooden inserts, the frame is made of Oregon. The paint is coming away with age in various small areas as most old paintings do. The frame shows sign of age and wear. The painting has patination and is extremely dusty and dirty, dirt building up over the years along the frame lines, the canvas is tacked over the frame and is very brittle, it was pre-covered or treated with some sort of coating material as you can see it at the back of the frame where the canvas is bare. I am certain this is Stephens work!

Can you give me an opinion or help me with the research on this painting, you are probalby the best and most versed people in the world on this subject. I have included a picture of a the frame from "Triumph of the Innocents" .

Any help would be greatly appreciated, have I found a forgotten painting or is my research wrong?

Trevor Dunen- Essendon Australia