Study for two draped females

At Venice by Sir Edward Coley Burne-Jones, Bt ARA (1833-1898). Pencil; inscribed with title: 4 ½ x 7 inches.

“Throughout his life Burne-Jones's fey sense of humour found an outlet in caricatures, often sketched in the company of friends or in letters to them, and they counterpoint the seriousness of his studio work. They often poke fun at obesity, in parody of Rubens; here, four gondoliers struggle to row with an enormous naked figure. Burne-Jones was a thin man, but his friends William and Jane Morris were inclined to fat, and underlying the Rabelaisian humour is genuine concern for his friends' health. Burne-Jones's wife Georgiana was rather high-minded, and Graham Robertson believed that 'EB-J's surroundings were so extremely correct and proper that I think he had to break out occasionally” (Kerrison Preston, ed., Letters from Graham Robertson, 1953, p. 491). — The Maas Gallery [Exhibition Catalogue], p. 16.


The Maas Gallery [Exhibition Catalogue]. London: Maas Gallery, 2010. Catalogue number 10, p. 16.

Readers should consult the website of The Maas Gallery to obtain information about recent exhibitions and to order their catalogues. [GPL]

Last modified 2 June 2020