Artwork Library

Early Evening, Kensington High Street, London

Early Evening, Kensington High Street, London

Location: London, UK

Subject: Streetscape

Medium: Oils

Date: 1930s

Signature: Knighton-Hammond

Dimensions: 50 cm x 60 cm

This oil painting of Kensington High Street in the muted early evening light makes it simply evident that the lessons of Impressionism had been absorbed fully by Knighton-Hammond. His skill in the handling of paint is everywhere apparent in this streetscape from the spirited brushstrokes of the architecture and the foliage of the trees. The representation of the scene from a dramatic viewpoint with panoramic structure powerfully engages the spectator’s interest. The daubs of thickly applied pigment and bold accents of evening light and shadow on the street and the figures suggesting movement and spontaneity give a feeling of life in the paint and in the painting. Whatever clues to artistic procedure Knighton-Hammond had managed to glean for himself in the South or France and in Italy have been brought to bear on this painting. However, the tuition that he received at Manchester Municipal School of Art under Adolphe Valette gave him a firm sense of direction. One is aware how much thought and technical knowledge have been brought to bear on this painting. The linear perspective and the brilliant rendition of the facades and roofs reveal a painter of considerable control and power. The overall composition makes this picture a true masterpiece arguably on par with any streetscape carried out by the French Impressionists.

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