Liverpool artwork of the day – Wednesday February 21 2007. ‘Waiting for Legal Advice’ 1857 by James Campbell
Which is, sort of, what I was doing yesterday. In much friendlier circumstances though, in a nice cafe just getting some paper signed.
‘the most Dickensian of all the Pre-Raphaelites’ is a good description I think, not the sort of image you normally associate with the Pre-Raphaelites.
This interior of a Liverpool solicitor’s office shows an old man all set for an argument while the two clerks whisper behind a screen. It is the most fully worked out of Campbell’s anecdotal paintings conceived in a sub-Wilkie vein, with an accumulation of detail extending even to the Liverpool Almanack and Table pasted upon the wall.
Campbell’s own father worked for the Sun Insurance Company in Liverpool and the artist was no doubt familiar with the warren of clerk’s offices in Liverpool’s city centre.