Two Musicians

1954

Richards, Ceri
Ceri Richards had a passion for music and poetry befitting his Welsh roots and both of these artforms provided the inspiration for many of his paintings. During the late 1940s and early 1950s,Richards made a series of paintings of pianists in interiors. Although the figures are generic rather than portraits of particular people, his muse was often his younger sister Esther, who was a good pianist and played for many years as accompanist to the Dunvant Male Voice Choir. Dunvant, a small mining village to the west of Swansea, was Richards’ birthplace and his early years there, steeped in music and literature, made a significant impact on his art. Richards was himself a gifted pianist and had a particular passion for the work of Beethoven and Debussy. In Two Musicians, the lively arabesques of the violinist’s body suggest the rhythm and flow of the music being played, while there is a reflective stillness about the pianist, who has turned to listen to her companion. These arabesques are mirrored in the dragon pattern on the pot, which is placed centrally behind the two figures. Owned and decorated by Richards himself, it appears in a number of his paintings.
  • Artwork Details: 51 x 61cm
  • Edition:
  • Material description: oil on canvas
  • Credit line: bequest of Sir William Emrys and Lady Williams © Estate of Ceri Richards. All Rights Reserved, DACS 2011
  • Theme: Figurative
  • Medium: Painting
  • Accession number: ACC4/1983

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