We note some wonderful realistic paintings by Sigismund Charles Herbert Goetze. They seem romantic Victorian in style, but his career extended well into the 20th century. We
have been unable to find much information about him. We are not even sure if he is American or English. We note he made a major contribution to Regent's park in London. One of his most famous portrairs is of a French boy in a white smock. The late Victorian artist was quite a talented painter of religious and sentimental works,
We note some wonderful realistic paintings by Sigismund Charles Herbert Goetze. They seem romantic Victorian in style, but his career extended well into the 20th century. We have been unable to find much information about him.
The name is of course German and his parents were Germans, but he was born and raised in Britain. He painted in both oil and watercolor. Many of his works were inspired by religious and mythological subjects. There are also some landscapes, especially from Wales and Scotland. We also notice some charming, often sentimental portraits like the one here. Goetz during World War I (1914-1918) painted a series of impressive murals for the Foreign Office (now the Foreign and Commonwealth Office) as a gift. He completed the murals in 1921 and they now surround the Grand Staircase of the Foreign Office. His goal was to depict the 'origin, education, development, expansion and triumph of the British Empire, leading up to the Covenant of the League of Nations'. The muralsa as might be expected arecmore heroic than historically accurate. Goetze was much better known in his day that today and there are memorials to him in London. St. Mark's Church, Maida Vale, London has a Goetze Memorial Chapel. The Chapel features a number of War Memorial panels painted by Goetze that show Christ in Glory with musicians, and flanking panels of Saints George, Andrew, Patrick and David, with figures representing the Services below. Many English children are familar with a small statue of a boy on a bear at the entrance to London Zoo in Regents Park, London. It is in memory of Goetze. The sculptor William McMillan RA (1887-1977) created the Goetze Memorial Fountain, with triton and dryads, in Regents Park (1950). We note he made a major contribution to Regent's park in London. They include some wonderful sculptures set in Queen Mary's Gardens. Goetze who lived in Grove House from 1909 to 1939
One of his most famous portrairs is of a French child. It is entitled "Harebells". I wasn't sure what that meant, but find it is a flower--the flowers in the child's basket. The portrait was painted in 1903. He looks to be coming back to the home after picking flowers for his mother in the garden. It seems a typical romanticized portrait popular in the Victorian era. Of course this paintin was done 2 years after the Victorian era ended.
This charming portrait looks to be a litle girl. In fact the child is a boy. He is Jean Philippe Guyon of the wealthy French Guyon Family. I am not sure how old he was at the time, but he looks to be about 5-6 years old. Many children would have thir hair cur to go to school, but Jean came from a rich family, he probbly had a tutor. e know nothing more about Jean. The family lived in a chateau on the West side of Paris. The chateau became famous during World war II when German Field Marshall Erwin Rommel set up his headquaters there.
Jean wears a wide-brimmed staw hat. I'm not sure just what the garment is that Jean child is wearing. It may be a dres, and he may not yet have been breached. It looks to me, however, like a smock. Note the wide band of blue "smocking" and embroidered cuffs and collar. This isone of several images that show that boys wore smocks at home, although the available suggest that it was primarily boys from affluent families that wore smocks at home. School wasa different matter. A great many French children from all classess wore smocks to school.
The late Victorian artist was quite a talented painter of religious and sentimental works, two huge paintings of his are found in the Victoria University Chapel at the University of Toronto, Canada. One shows Christ Pilloried on the steps of St. Paul's Cathedral, while all of Edwardian Society streams by, as Christ leans forward he shelters a poor woman and her child who hide there, where he is tied to an altar dedicated to "The Unknown God" (see the book of Acts in the Bible). It is a remarkable and while not life sized painting, it is painted to include the viewer in it by the judicious use of perspective. And angel and the "great cloud of witness" hover above the scene Also in the chapel is a companion piece of the Crucifixion, with the same perspective effect. When the first was shown at the Canadian National Exhibition in 1916, I believe, it caused a huge
uproar, and one man walked 50 miles to put his cane through it. It is an ineresting pices of social commentary and the social Gospel as well, though not well regarded by the students at the seminary (Emmanuel ollege) for the most part. [Boratto]
Boratto, Gary. E-mail, June 10, 2005.
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