Celebration show for RHA in the South

THE celebration show now underway at the Lavit Gallery in Cork entitled RHA in the South features paintings and sculptures by invited members from the Royal Hibernian Academy.

Celebration show for RHA in the South

This is an exhibition of landscape, portraiture, still life and figurative work in paint, print, sculpture and mixed media. The 11 artists taking part are Veronica Bolay, Joe Dunne; James English; Martin Gale; Charles Harper; Mick O’Dea; Vivienne Roche; Thomas Ryan; Una Sealy; Blaise Smith and Imogen Stuart.

The RHA as a visual arts organisation is now entering its third century. The Lavit Gallery is home to Cork Arts Society which celebrates its 50th anniversary this year. The exhibition runs to September 10.

Meanwhile, the enigma of femininity is captured in the gaze of Proserpine in the painting by Dante Gabriel Rossetti (1828-1882) seen above.

This defining image of the Pre-Raphaelite movement comes up at Sotheby’s sale of British and Irish art in London next Nov 19 estimated at £1.2-1.8m. Proserpine, daugher of Zeus (Persephone in Greek mythology) holds a pomegranate. The consumption of its seeds condemned her to spend half of each year in the underworld with Pluto, her abductor. The painting depicts Proserpine, symbol to the artist of love in grief, moments after she has tasted the fruit.

The model for the work was Jane Morris, wife of artist and designer William Morris, who became Rossetti’s mistress, inspiration and muse.

The pair took great care to protect their privacy, each destroying their correspondence with the other. Nevertheless, they became a source of gossip in Victorian times.

The auction next November will coincide with a Pre-Raphaelite exhibition at the Pushkin in Moscow. The show was at Tate Britain last year and at the National Gallery of Art in Washington earlier this year.

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