Houlgate, Waves breaking onto Shore, 7th September 1926
Framed (ref: 4708)
Signed and inscribed on reverse, 7th Sept/26 Houlgate
Oil on panel, 6 1/2 x 8 3/4 in. (16 x 22 cm.)
Tags: John Moody seascapes and skyscapes
In a D section reeded gilded frame
John Moody's formative 1926 painting tour, which took in both sides
of the Channel, was undertaken at crucial point in his early career. He
was 20 in 1926 and though determined to pursue his passion as an artist
he was financially vulnerable. A letter from a family friend in December
1926 cautions him on life as an artist: "I am very interested in seeing
that you have taken up lettering and I congratulate you on your
success. I think you have done a wise and practical thing in taking up
commercial art, but it would be a pity if you did nothing else. At the
start I am afraid you can't live on doing work that will live, but you
may live on doing work that will not live."
By 1930 Jack, as a founder member of the New Kingston Group, was
exhibiting work around the country and in 1931 was teaching Architecture
and Perspective at the Wimbledon School of Art. Facing penury however
he enrolled as a singer at the Webber Douglas School of Singing which
was to draw him inexorably into theatre life - and eventually into the
world of opera, for which he is best remembered. He never lost his love
of painting. The extraordinary series which resulted from his 1926
painting spree were motivated by an interest in light - huge skies,
seascapes, white cliffs and rolling sand dunes.
Two years later his Knocke series, on the Belgian coast, retain similar
characteristics whilst adopting a slightly surreal imagery.
We are grateful to Richard Thompson for the above catalogue note.