Thursday, August 31, 2017

19C Austrian Flower Seller

Josef Wenzel Süss (Austrian artist, 1857-1937) A woman selling flowers

When some think street flower sellers, they picture Eliza Doolittle, the flower seller in Covent Garden who went from rags to riches, thanks to the attentions of Professor Higgins, in George Bernard Shaw's (1856-1950) Pygmalion. Her rise out of poverty was hardly typical. Flower sellers were common on the streets of London, Paris, & other European urban centers. We can glean some information about British flower sellers from Victorian London census records which reveal that most were married women & widows ranging from older teens to women in their 50s, single women, mostly enumerated as "daughter" are far fewer & make up a small percentage of the total. We can see the occasional "flower girl" who was put out onto the streets to sell flowers in order to help with the family income. Flower sellers didn’t just sell cut flowers, which had to be sourced at dawn, taken home, made up into bunches & then taken out onto the streets to sell from a basket, wheelbarrow, hand cart, or temporary stall in high traffic areas such as informal markets or lining the streets of busy thoroughfares. They also sold pot plants, "roots," seeds, there was a hierarchy within the occupation as described by Henry Mayhew (1812-1887) in London Labour & the London Poor. 1851. "The street-sellers of whom I have now to treat comprise those who deal in trees & shrubs, in flowers (whether in pots, or with soil attached to the roots, or cut from the plant as it grows in the garden), & in seeds & branches (as of holly, mistletoe, ivy, yew, laurel, palm, lilac, & may). The “root-sellers” (as the dealers in flowers in pots are mostly called) rank, when in a prosperous business, with the highest “aristocracy” of the street greengrocers. The condition of a portion of them, may be characterized by a term which is readily understood as “comfortable,” that is to say, comparatively comfortable, when the circumstances of other street-sellers are considered...Dealers in trees & shrubs are the same as the root-sellers.  The same may be said, but with some few exceptions, of the seed-sellers...The root-sellers do not reside in any particular localities, but there are more of them living in the outskirts than in the thickly populated streets. The street-sellers of cut flowers present characteristics peculiarly their own. This trade is mostly in the hands of girls, who are of 2 classes. This traffic ranks...among the lowest grades of the street-trade, being pursued only by the very poor, or the very young." Mayhew provided extensive descriptions of...potted plants & cut flowers. The seller ordinarily confined herself "to the cheaper sorts of plants, & rarely meddles with such things as acacias, mezereons, savines, syringas, lilacs, or even myrtles, & with none of these things unless cheap."  

Covent Garden’s flower girls attracted attention to their wares by shouting at passers by using marketplace jargon: “Two bundles a penny, primroses!” “Sweet violets, penny a bunch!”  In 1851, Henry Mayhew described 2 types of flower girls. The 1st & most notable were the flower “waifs," typically younger girls who scraped by on their own, or sold flowers to supplement their parents’ income. They were generally “very persevering,” & persisted at the heels of anyone who passed by, hoping to sell their wares. The 2nd type of flower girl was less common, & they doubled as prostitutes, generally staying out later than their contemporaries. They came to form a seedier reputation for the flower-vending business, & at the time “flower-seller” was a popularly-known London moniker for “prostitute.” 

Street sellers, often called costermongers in Britain, were known to have been in London from at least the 15C, & possibly much earlier. Mayhew, writing in the 1840s, called costermongering an "ancient calling" & attributed the 1st written descriptions of the street sellers' distinctive cries & sales patter appearing in a ballad, entitled London Lyckpeny by John Lydgate probably written in the late 1300s & 1st performed around 1409. William Shakespeare (1564 -1616) & Christopher Marlowe (1564-1593) both mention costermongers in their writings. Initiatives to rid the city of street traders were common during the reigns of Elizabeth I (1558–1603) & Charles I (1625–1649). These attempts failed & the number of London-based street vendors surged in the 18C & 19C. On the otherhand, every employment, even down to the flower-sellers, was carefully regulated by statute in Paris, before the Revolution.

Street life & the "cries of London" was also a recurring theme in painting. In the mid 1700s, the English map-maker turned water-colorist, Paul Sandby (1731-1809), created a series entitled London Cries depicting English shopkeepers, stall-holders & itinerant street vendors. The Dutch engraver, Marcellus Laroon or Lauron, the elder (1653–1702) began working in London in the mid-1700s, where he produced his most famous work, the series, The Cryes of London. The Flemish engraver & printmaker, Anthony Cardon (1772–1813), spent time in England in the 1790s, where he created a series of engravings of London's street sellers, known as the Cries of London. Francis Wheatley (1747-1801), the English painter , who had been born in Covent Garden & was well acquainted with London's street life, exhibited a series of artworks, also entitled Cries of London, between 1792 & 1795. Augustus Edwin Mulready (1844-1904), made his reputation by painting scenes of Victorian life which included street sellers, urchins, & market flower sellers. The French artist, Louise Moillon (1609-1696), also painted market scenes, street vendors, & green-grocers, usually hawking fruit, as subject matter in early 17C France.

Madonnas attributed to Vittorio Crivelli (Italian artist, c 1440-1501)

Attributed to Vittorio Crivelli (Italian artist, c 1440 to 1501) Madonna and Child with Angels


Attributed to Vittorio Crivelli (Italian artist, c 1440 to 1501) Madonna and Child


Attributed to Vittorio Crivelli (Italian artist, from 1440 to 1501 c) Detail of above Madonna and Child


Attributed to Vittorio Crivelli (Italian artist, c 1440 to 1501) Madonna and Child


Attributed to Vittorio Crivelli (Italian artist, c 1440 to 1501) Virgin and angels


Attributed to Vittorio Crivelli (Italian artist, c 1440 to 1501) Madonna and Child


Attributed to Vittorio Crivelli (Italian artist, from 1440 to 1501 c) Detail Madonna and Child


Attributed to Vittorio Crivelli (Italian artist, from 1440 to 1501 c) Detail Madonna and Child enthroned


Attributed to Vittorio Crivelli (Italian artist, from 1440 to 1501 c) Detail of the Madonna and Child with Saints 


Attributed to Vittorio Crivelli (Italian artist, c 1440 to 1501) Madonna and Child


Attributed to Vittorio Crivelli (Italian artist, c 1440 to 1501) Madonna and Child


Attributed to Vittorio Crivelli (Italian artist, c 1440 to 1501) Madonna and Child


Attributed to Vittorio Crivelli (Italian artist, c 1440 to 1501) Madonna and Child Enthroned with Angels Making Music


Attributed to Vittorio Crivelli (Italian artist, c 1440 to 1501) Madonna and Child Detail from panel with Saint Marcos and Lorenzo


Attributed to Vittorio Crivelli (Italian artist, c 1440 to 1501) Madonna and Child with Angels Making Music


Attributed to Vittorio Crivelli (Italian artist, c 1440 to 1501) Madonna and Child with Angels Making Music


Attributed to Vittorio Crivelli (Italian artist, from 1440 to 1501 c) Detail of above Madonna and Child with Angels Making Music 


Attributed to Vittorio Crivelli (Italian artist, c 1440 to 1501) Madonna and Child


Attributed to Vittorio Crivelli (Italian artist, from 1440 to 1501 c) Madonna and Child

In this blog, I try to begin each day with a painting of the Madonna & Child. It centers me; connects me to the past; & encourages me to post some of the religious paintings which were a large part of the core of early Western art.  In the 4C, as the Christian population was rapidly growing & was now supported by the state, Christian art evolved & became grander to suit new, enlarged public spaces & the changing contemporary tastes of elite private clients.

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

19C Young Flower Seller

Valentine Cameron Prinsep (1838-1904) The Flower Seller

One of Henry Mayhew’s (London Labour & the London Poor. 1851) investigations focused on flower girls, children aged under 20, who walked the streets selling flowers, mostly sent out by their parents, but in some cases through the necessity to make ends meet having been orphaned. Mayhew pointed out that young girls often started out by selling cut flowers & small bunches of herbs: "At about 7 years of age the girls first go into the streets to sell. A shallow-basket is given to them, with about two shillings for stock-money, & they hawk, according to the time of year, either oranges, apples, or violets; some begin their street education with the sale of water-cresses...I sell...all kinds, but it’s very little use offering any that’s not sweet. I think it’s the sweetness as sells them. I sell primroses, when they’re in, & violets, & wall-flowers, & stocks, & roses of different sorts, & pinks, & carnations, & mixed flowers, & lilies of the valley, & green lavender, & mignonette (but that I do very seldom), & violets again at this time of the year, for we get them both in spring & winter...the best sale of all is, I think, moss-roses, young moss-roses. We do best of all on them. Primroses are good, for people say: `Well, here’s spring again to a certainty.’ Gentlemen are our best customers. I’ve heard that they buy flowers to give to the ladies...I buy my flowers at Covent Garden; sometimes, but very seldom, at Farringdon. I pay 1s. for a dozen bunches, whatever flowers are in. Out of every two bunches I can make three, at 1d. a piece...We make the bunches up ourselves. We get the rush to tie them with for nothing. We put their own leaves round these violets...The paper for a dozen costs a penny; sometimes only a halfpenny...We do better on oranges in March or April, I think it is, than on flowers. Oranges keep better than flowers you see, sir."

Street sellers, often called costermongers in Britain, were known to have been in London from at least the 15C, & possibly much earlier. Mayhew, writing in the 1840s, called costermongering an "ancient calling" & attributed the 1st written descriptions of the street sellers' distinctive cries & sales patter appearing in a ballad, entitled London Lyckpeny by John Lydgate probably written in the late 1300s & 1st performed around 1409. William Shakespeare (1564 -1616) & Christopher Marlowe (1564-1593) both mention costermongers in their writings. Initiatives to rid the city of street traders were common during the reigns of Elizabeth I (1558–1603) & Charles I (1625–1649). These attempts failed & the number of London-based street vendors surged in the 18C & 19C. On the otherhand, every employment, even down to the flower-sellers, was carefully regulated by statute in Paris, before the Revolution.



Street life & the "cries of London" was also a recurring theme in painting. In the mid 1700s, the English map-maker turned water-colorist, Paul Sandby (1731-1809) created a series entitled London Cries depicting English shopkeepers, stall-holders & itinerant street vendors. The Dutch engraver, Marcellus Laroon or Lauron, the elder (1653–1702) began working in London in the mid-1700s, where he produced his most famous work, the series, The Cryes of London. The Flemish engraver & printmaker, Anthony Cardon (1772–1813), spent time in England in the 1790s, where he created a series of engravings of London's street sellers, known as the Cries of London. Francis Wheatley (1747-1801), the English painter , who had been born in Covent Garden & was well acquainted with London's street life, exhibited a series of artworks, also entitled Cries of London, between 1792 & 1795. Augustus Edwin Mulready (1844-1904), made his reputation by painting scenes of Victorian life which included street sellers, urchins, & market flower sellers. The French still life artist, Louise Moillon (1609-1696), also painted market scenes, street vendors, & green-grocers, usually hawking fruit, as subject matter in early 17C France.

Madonnas attributed to Duccio di Buoninsegna c 1255-1319

 Duccio (Italian, Sienese, 1255-1319). Madonna and Child

Duccio (c 1255-1319) was one of the most influential Italian artists of His time. Born in Siena, Tuscany, he worked mostly with pigment and egg tempera and like most of His contemporaries painted religious subjects.

Duccio (Italian, Sienese, 1255-1319). Madonna and Child


Duccio (Italian, Sienese, 1255-1319). Madonna with Angels and Saints. Detail 1308-11


Duccio (Italian, Sienese, 1255-1319). Madonna and Child


Duccio, Madonna and Child also called Stoclet Madonna or Stroganoff Madonna, c. 1300


Duccio (Italian, Sienese, 1255-1319). Madonna and Child


Duccio (Italian, Sienese, 1255-1319). Gualino Madonna


Duccio (Italian, Sienese, 1255-1319). Madonna and Child

In this blog, I try to begin each day with a painting of the Madonna & Child. It centers me; connects me to the past; & encourages me to post some of the religious paintings which were a large part of the core of early Western art.  In the 4C, as the Christian population was rapidly growing & was now supported by the state, Christian art evolved & became grander to suit new, enlarged public spaces & the changing contemporary tastes of elite private clients.

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

19C Flower Girl

Sir Luke Fildes. English (English artist, 1843-1927) Venetian Flower Girl

Madonnas - A few from the 1300s

Simone Martini (Italian painter, c 1285-1344) Maestà (detail) 1315



Wilton Diptych, Virgin and Child with Angels 1395



1310 Madonna and Child, c 1310-1315 Master of the Albertini-Master of the Casole Fresco



1315 Madonna and Child, c 1310-1315 Simone Martini (Italian painter, c 1285-1344)



1315 Madonna and Child, c 1312-1315 Duccio (fl. 1278-1319)



1320 Madonna and Child, c 1315-1330 Pietro Lorenzetti (ca. 1280-1348)



1325 Madonna and Child, Ugolina da Siena-aka Ugolino di Nerio (fl. 1317-1349)



1325 Madonna and Child, c 1325-1330 Ugolino di Nerio (fl, 1317-1349)



1325 Madonna and Child, ca. 1325 Unknown follower of Giotto Bondone (1266-1337)



1326 Madonna and Child,  Unknown Artist, probably Sienese



1335 Madonna and Child, Lippo Memmi (ca. 1291-1356)



1335 Madonna and Child, Bernardo Daddi (c 1290-1350)



Workshop of Bernardo Daddi (Italian) 1345-1349



1340 Madonna and Child, Bernardo Daddi (ca. 1290-1350)



1340 Madonna and Child, c 1335-1345 Ambrogio Lorenzetti (ca. 1290-1348)



1345 Madonna and Child with St. Anne, c 1340-1345 Francesco Traini (fl. 1321-1345)



1350 Madonna and Child, Barna da Siena (fl. 1330-1350)



1350 Madonna and Child, Lippo Memmi (ca. 1291-1356)



1350s Madonna of the Recommended, Lippo Memmi (c 1291-1356)



1360s Madonna and Child, Barnaba da Modena (1328-1386)



1367 Madonna and Child, Barnaba da Modena (1328-1386)



1367 Madonna Madonna and Child, Barnaba da Modena (1328-1386) and Child



1375 Madonna and Child, c 1370's  Paolo di Giovanni Fei (c 1345-1411)



1375 Madonna and Child, ca. 1370-1375 Barnaba da Modena (1328-1386)



1380 Madonna and Child with Angels, Spinello Aretino (c 1350-1410)



1380 Madonna and Child, Antonio Veneziano (1369-1419)


1386 Madonna and Child with Two Donors, Cecco di Pietro (fl. 1370-1386)

In this blog, I try to begin each day with a painting of the Madonna & Child. It centers me; connects me to the past; & encourages me to post some of the religious paintings which were a large part of the core of early Western art.  In the 4C, as the Christian population was rapidly growing & was now supported by the state, Christian art evolved & became grander to suit new, enlarged public spaces & the changing contemporary tastes of elite private clients.