Image: National Gallery of Canada.*
From The Art Journal, 1909, p253: Mrs. Swynnerton’s ‘St. Martin’s Summer’ is a most glad and confident painting. It should be seen as a decoration, making a single space of radiant colour, free of the confusions of colours surrounding it in a picture gallery. Her art is careless of particulars in this, as in other of her paintings. The wings of flamingo red are not organic to the figure, the painting of the clasped hands is cruelly raw. But the breadth and purity of the conception, the rose-tinted face with its close crown of golden hair, the body fair against the deep airy blue of the sky, have sweetness in their strength.
From The Englishwoman’s Review of Social and Industrial Questions, July 15 1909: Here, once again, she depicts a woman who personifies her ideal of ample and glowing womanhood, one who seems to drink the beauty of life with eyes closed – in an ecstacy of happiness. Seen from a distance in broadly-painted flesh tones – and even the strongly outlined purple shadow on cheek and neck – take their right place in the scheme.
‘St. Martin’s Summer’ is a period of warm weather late in the year, St. Martin’s Day being 10 November.
- Medium: oil on canvas.
- Dimensions: 1100 x 1063 mm (1.17 m²).
- History: mentioned in press as in existence 1898; exhibited Women’s Exhibition, Earl’s Court, 1900; New Gallery, Summer Exhibition 1909; purchased 1922 by the National Gallery of Canada.
- Location: National Gallery of Canada, Ottowa.
* The image is from a ‘curatorial file’ that a visitor to the gallery was kindly allowed to see and photograph, and has been deliberately ‘pixelized’ because of possible copyright issues.