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Frank Holl: Emerging from the Shadows

Frank Holl: Emerging from the Shadows
Mark Bills

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Francis 'Frank' Montague Holl (1845-1888) was one of the great painters of the Victorian era, notable for his tragic social realism as well as his penetrating portraits. Although highly respected in his lifetime, his early death meant that he never fully received the acclaim that his work merited. His great subject pictures, often on bleak themes, were frequently criticized for their darkness but found great favor with the public. His portraits can be seen on a par with those of Watts and Millais, and he was an influence on Van Gogh who greatly admired his work. This book represents the first retrospective of this significant artist. Exploring in parallel the subject paintings and the portraits, it considers the importance of Holl's output and his continued relevance today.

Author Info

Mark Bills is Curator of Watts Gallery, formerly Senior Curator of Paintings, Print and Drawings, Museum of London and Visual Arts Officer at the Russell-Cotes Art Gallery and Museum, UK. He has written widely including G.F. Watts Victorian Visionary: Highlights from the Watts Gallery Collection (2008), The Art of Satire: London in Caricature (PWP, 2006), and William Powell Frith, (co-editor and author, 2006), as well as Art in the Age of Queen Victoria: A Wealth of Depictions (editor and author) and A Victorian Salon (editor and author). He has written numerous articles on eighteenth- and nineteenth-century British art for books and publications including London: The Illustrated History, Burlington Magazine, Apollo and Print Quarterly.

Peter Funnell is Curator of Nineteenth-Century Portraits and Head of Research Programmes at the National Portrait Gallery, London, UK. Since joining the NPG in 1990 he has curated many exhibitions and led major projects ranging from the redevelopment of the Gallery's first-floor displays to directing the research of 10,000 portrait illustrations for the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography of which he is a Consultant Editor.

Jane Sellars is Curator of Art at the Mercer Art Gallery, Harrogate, UK and has written widely about women and art. Formerly Education Officer at National Museums Liverpool and Director of the Bronte Parsonage Museum, author of several books on the Brontes, including The Art of the Brontes, (with Christine Alexander, 1995), and Writers' Lives: Charlotte Bronte (1997). For William Powell Frith: Painting the Victorian Age (2007) she looked at the role of women in Frith's personal and professional lives. Jane Sellars was the main contributor and editor for Atkinson Grimshaw: Painter of Moonlight (2011), published by Harrogate Borough Council to accompany the award winning exhibition of the same name.

Barbara Bryant is an Art historian, writer, and consultant specializing in the work of G.F. Watts. She wrote the exhibition catalogue G.F. Watts Portraits: Fame and Beauty in Victorian Society (2004) and G.F. Watts Victorian Visionary: Highlights from the Watts Gallery Collection (co-editor and author, 2008). She was a major contributor to the exhibition The Age of Rossetti, Burne-Jones and Watts: Symbolism in Britain 1860-1910 at Tate Britain in 1997, she is the author of the forthcoming Oxford Dictionary of National Biography's entry on Watts, as well as other articles and essays on the artist and on eighteenth- and nineteenth-century British art.

Philip McEvansoneya is Lecturer in the History of Painting at Trinity College, Dublin, Ireland. His research interests are in aspects of the history of art in Ireland and Britain with particular reference to the history of collections and the history of institutions. His PhD concerned the work of Frank Holl and Luke Fildes. He has published widely including articles in Burlington Magazine and Journal of the History of Collections.

Mary McMahon is Curatorial Fellow at Watts Gallery. She has an MA in Design History from the Royal College of Art, and a BA in Art History from University College London.


'Engaging and readable.'
Burlington Magazine

Bibliographic Info

Imprint: Philip Wilson Publishers Ltd
Publisher: Philip Wilson Publishers Ltd

ISBN: 9781781300169
Publication Date: 29 Jun 2013
Number of Pages: 144
Height: 267
Width: 213
Illustrations: 55 colour

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