This semi-abstract landscape by New Zealander, Frances Hodgkins has surrealistic undertones, lurid colour and a strange spatial ambiguity between the foreground and background. A number of metal or wooden objects that resemble enlarged pieces of military equipment are scattered in front of a building. Painted in 1937, Tanks, Barrels and Drums hints at the strain and anxiety that the artist, by then in her 70s and living in Dorset, England, was feeling at the prospect of the imminent outbreak of war.
Frances Hodgkins was born in 1869 in Dunedin, New Zealand. She came to Europe in 1901, and travelled a great deal, settling in Paris in 1908. An exhibition of her work in 1928 was a big success and gained her membership of the influential 7 & 5 Society. Since her death her reputation as an influential colourist and significant modernist painter has continued to grow.
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