Archive for the ‘Sands, Ethel’ Category

The Boudoir revisited

June 4, 2013
The Boudoir at Attingham, by Ethel Sands, probably 1929, oil on board, oil on board,  61 x 49.9 cm.  ©Christie's

The Boudoir at Attingham, by Ethel Sands, probably 1929,
oil on board, 61 x 49.9 cm. ©Christie’s

We have just purchased this small painting of the Boudoir at Attingham Park at auction at Christie’s South Kensington. It is by Ethel Sands (1873-1962) and was probably painted in 1929.

Recent photograph of the Boudoir. ©National Trust Images/Andreas von Einsiedel

Recent photograph of the Boudoir. ©National Trust Images/Andreas von Einsiedel

Between the two World Wars Teresa, Lady Berwick (1890-1972), entertained a cosmopolitan and artistic circle at Attingham.

©Christie's

©Christie’s

Lady Berwick’s father, William Stokes Hulton (1852-1921), had been a painter who knew Sickert and Sargent. Her mother, Costanza Mazini (1863-1939) had links with the international literary and artistic community in Florence, including the Brownings and the Berensons. Thomas Noel-Hill, 8th Lord Berwick (1877-1947), met Teresa while serving as a diplomat in Italy during the First World War, when she was working as a nurse, and they were married in 1919.

©Christie's

©Christie’s

After the war they gradually restored and updated Attingham, adding furniture and art to the collection. They also acknowledged recent artistic developments by naming cows on the farm after Picasso, Gaugin and Matisse. There are records of Ethel Sands visiting Attingham on several occasions in 1929, when she was joined by writers, intellectuals and aesthetes such as L.P. Hartley, Cesare Visconti, Count of Marcignago, Albert (‘Bertie’) Landsberg and Angela Mond.

Sir Gerald Kelly (1879-1972) painting Lady Berwick in the Boudoir, c. 1923. ©National Trust

Sir Gerald Kelly (1879-1972) painting Lady Berwick in the Boudoir, c. 1923. ©National Trust

The late 18th-century painted decoration of the Boudoir, originally created for Anne Vernon, 1st Lady Berwick (1744-97), was cleaned and restored a few years ago. But this late 1920s painting is a beautiful and useful snapshot of the room in one of its more recent incarnations.