Liverpool artwork of the day – Wednesday March 14 2007. ‘Blackberry Gathering’ 1912 Elizabeth Adela Forbes, née Armstrong (1859 – 1912) at The Walker
Well, its not quite blackberry season but its another lovely sunny day and we’re off to Ness Gardens this morning so I’m in the mood for this sort of picture.
Forbes was born in Ottawa, Canada. She studied at the Art Students League, New York, where she was influenced by the work of Millet and Bastien Lepage. She also studied in Munich under the American painter William Merrit Chase.
For a time she worked as a painter, engraver and book illustrator in Canada. In 1882 she went to Brittany and stayed in Port Aven, where she painted directly from nature in the open air and associated with other artists influenced by the plein-air movement. From here she moved to Newlyn, Cornwall in 1885, where she met Stanhope Forbes and other artists of the Newlyn school.
She married Stanhope Forbes in 1890 and together they established the Newlyn School of Art in 1899. She continued to paint and exhibited widely across Britain, including the Liverpool Autumn Exhibitions.
This painting is typical of her outdoor subjects with anecdotal interest. It was first exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1912. Bequeathed to the Walker Art Gallery by Mr WJ Ladevez Davies in 1953.