Geisha Girl (1894)
About this artwork
The rich surface patterns and sparkling appearance of the beautiful geisha girl illustrate Henry's deft brushwork. Her elaborately dressed hair, embroidered kimono and fan, seen against a patterned screen and stylized representation of Mount Fuji, contribute to the painting's decorative character. Interest in such themes was stimulated in Glasgow by an exhibition of Oriental art held in the city in 1882. Unfortunately, many of Henry's canvases painted during his visit to Japan, financed by the shipping magnate William Burrell and the picture dealer Alexander Reid, were ruined on the return voyage. However, his experiences inspired a number of fine paintings, such as this one.
- title: Geisha Girl
- accession number: NG 2583
- artist: George HenryScottish (1858 - 1943)
- gallery: Scottish National Gallery(On Display)
- object type: Painting
- subject: Flowers Glasgow Boys
- medium: Oil on canvas
- date created: 1894
- measurements: 53.30 x 32.80 cm (framed: 78.10 x 57.90 x 11.00 cm)
- credit line: Bequest of Alexander Esmé Gordon 1993
- photographer: Antonia Reeve
Henry's paintings include depictions of striking landscapes, symbolic folk tales, Japanese themes and society portraits. Born in Ayrshire, he studied at the Glasgow School of Art and joined the circle of painters known as the Glasgow Boys. His friendship with Edward Atkinson Hornel led to some collaborative work and they were among the first British artists to visit Japan, traveling there together in 1893. On their return in 1895 Henry's compositions reflected the impact of this visit but he concentrated on the more lucrative painting of portraits and established a successful studio in London.