Circus Scene

Cosmo Clark (1897 - 1967)

Verre églomisé (oil on glass)

1936

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  • About the work

    "Circus Scene" was produced using a technique known as "verre églomisé", by which the image is painted in reverse onto a sheet of clear glass. The final image is viewed from the unpainted side. Its flat composition offers limited perspective. The overall quality is decorative, with a medley of circus performers placed around the scene and the beams of light converging on the central figure. John Cosmo Clark was a graduate of Goldsmiths College of Art and was also the Director of the Rural Industries Bureau from 1942 to 1963.

  • About the artist
    John Cosmo Clark CBE, was a graduate of Goldsmiths College of Art. He fought in both World Wars and was awarded a Military Cross in 1918. He served as Deputy Chief Camouflage Officer for the Air Ministry in 1939. His paintings are characterised by the depiction of everyday activities such as street scenes and cafes, many of which were painted at night. One of Clark’s friends recounted how he would attach small battery-powered lamps to his canvases while painting in the dark. His wife, Jean Clark, was also an accomplished painter, and in 1983 a joint retrospective exhibition of their work was held at the Bankside Gallery in London.
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  • Details
    Title
    Circus Scene
    Date
    1936
    Medium
    Verre églomisé (oil on glass)
    Dimensions
    width: 101.50 cm, height: 127.00 cm
    Acquisition
    Presented by the Rural Development Commission, January 2000
    Inscription
    lower left: COSMO CLARK / 1936
    Provenance
    Given by artist to Rural Industries Bureau, passed to its successor the Council for Small Industries in Rural Areas. inerited by Rural Development Commission 1988 when the two merged.
    GAC number
    17443