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"The Brook" 1891

57.3 x 67.3 x 6.5 s. b. r. "E.A.Hornel / 1891" CRE HORNEL, Edward Atkinson; (Scottish; 1864-1933) LABEL: Hornel allied himself with the Glasgow Boys
in the mid 1880s. A modern work for its time, The Brook?s bright colours and textured surface show an interest in decorative forms and fl at patterns, matching contemporary developments in France, as well as the
tradition of Japanese art.The foreground girl picking fruit is redolent of images of Eve and the Tree of Knowledge while the most distant figure, bathed in light, sits in contemplative profile. The painting is thought to symbolize innocence and experience, as well as choice, as shown by the two middle-ground figures, each attracted to one of the allegorical figures, and in the process of deciding which one to follow.
The picture's first owner was the designer, J. Herbert McNair (1868-1955).