February in the Isle of Wight

John Brett, RA


Watercolour, bodycolour and gum on paper, 354 x 460 mm

© Birmingham Museums and Art Gallery, accession no. 1919P70.

Source: Google Art Project

Brett exhibited in watercolour less frequently than in oils, but this lovely early spring landscape is a good example of his "willingness to accept Ruskin's passionate advocacy of detail" (Lambourne 100). Hardly noticed amongst all the fresh sun-dappled green, a boy sits on the bank watching the activity, perhaps performance, of a girl at the foot of the slope. There are cottages on the other side, and a sailboat in the sea over the next rise, its white sails only just visible. The whole scene is bright and full of promise. — Jacqueline Banerjee.