Thursday, 12 February 2015

In Trafalgar Square

London Visitors,   James Tissot 1874
(now in the Toledo Museum of Art, Ohio)
Two boys from Christ's Hospital (the Bluecoat School) guiding visitors on the steps of the National
Gallery, London.  St Martin-in-the-Fields can be seen behind.  Tissot creates an odd tension in this painting, with its dominant architecture and the disposition of the figures.  The boys are a long way from their school in Newgate Street, where in their archaic Tudor uniform and distinctive yellow stockings, they were one of the sights of the City.  Present-day pupils (girls and boys), still give visitors engaging tours of their school, now in Horsham, Sussex.

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