Edward Burne-Jones’ ambitious watercolour joins new exhibition
The giant watercolour, Sponsa de Libano, by Edward Burne-Jones has come out of storage for a new exhibition which explores the painstaking and beautiful draftsmanship of the Pre-Raphaelite artist.
At more than three meters tall the spectacular piece has not been on display for nearly 20 years.
Inspired by the Old Testament’s Song of Solomon, Sponsa de Libano depicts Solomon’s pure and virginal new bride at the mercy of swirling winds and powerless to her destiny.
The north and south winds are represented in the form of two figures flying above Soloman’s wife. Their facial expressions may be gentle and beautiful, but the energetic twists and turns of their clothing, which spiral about them and then spin out of the image, symbolise the true nature of their power.
Assistant Curator of Fine Art, Lucy Gardner said: “In this incredible watercolour Burne-Jones has mastered a sense of movement and energy that truly capture nature’s presence and power.
“The work, which is too delicate to go on long-term display, is a highlight not just of this particular exhibition but of National Museums Liverpool’s entire collection. We’re very excited about bringing this gem out of storage and revealing it to a new generation.”
Composed of around 30 works, The Drawings of Edward Burne-Jones: A Pre-Raphaelite Master is an exploration of the method and skills behind some of his best-known works.
The exquisite selection of drawings and watercolours by Victorian artist opens to the public from 14 June 2013 to 12 January 2014.