L a - b e a u t é - s a u v e r a - l e - m o n d e ~ D o s t o ï e v s k i

L a - b e a u t é - s a u v e r a - l e - m o n d e  ~  D o s t o ï e v s k i

Sunday, July 31, 2016

One portrait - "Portrait of a Young Chinese Girl", by David Jagger, 1936

I find this painting of an unknown young woman quite astonishingly beautiful. The perfect shape of her rouged lips, the arching penciled brows, her hair sleekly bobbed in the style made iconic by Louise Brooks. And then her sheer physical beauty: the refined and elegant bone structure, the softness of her skin, the depth of her gaze. The simplicity and directness of the pose - and the tension in the line of her brow - are elements that help give the portrait such power. But more than anything else, the ravishing color.


David Jagger, RP, ROI (1891, Kilnhurst, near Rotherham, Yorkshire – 1958), English portrait painter. The son of a colliery manager, his elder sister Edith went on to become a landscape artist, and his younger brother Charles, an important sculptor. All three attended the Sheffield School of Art and, after his education, he became a leading member of the Royal Institute of Oil Painters (R.O.I.), and exhibited regularly at The Royal Academy, the Royal Society of British Artists (R.B.A.) and the R.O.I. In 1940, Jagger exhibited together with his sister and brother (posthumously) in a special exhibition at the Rotherham Art Gallery and Museum, under the title The art of the Jagger Family. He portrayed many famous people, including Queen Mary, Winston Churchill, and Vivien Leigh, and is probably best remembered for his much-reproduced portrait of the Boy Scouts' founder Robert Baden-Powell. 

The artist, a model, and a selection of the artist's work; the present painting is in the background. (With Jagger's reflection upon it.)