- Oil on board
- Gift of the Friends of Christchurch Art Gallery, 2017
- 1020 x 1325mm
The underlying influence of Dutch Golden Age painting is unmistakable in Jacqueline Fahey’s The Portobello Settee, particularly when seen alongside Gerrit Dou’s The Physician. Similar motifs appear in both works, from draped fabrics and Turkish rugs to books, bowls, windows and repeating circular forms. The small girl’s pose and expression also echo that of the waiting figure in the background of The Physician.Although painted over 300 years apart, both works can also be read as meditations on existence. Dou’s meticulous work considers a lifespan from conception to death, while Fahey’s painting brilliantly assesses the contained disarray of the place and time in which she finds herself; her immediate environment and experience as a mother in early 1970s Aotearoa New Zealand.
(Persistent Encounters, March 2020)