© the copyright holder. Photo credit: Wolverhampton Arts and Heritage
This intriguing bust, probably 1940s–1950s, looks like the work of someone like Frank Dobson or possibly Jacob Epstein, though it appears to be unsigned.
the hair looks too mannered for Epstein and the clay surface too perfect for Dobson. The hair forms feel too decorative for either. Are there any more views?
Jon, yes, if you go to https://artuk.org/discover/artworks/head-of-a-girl-269040 and click on the nine small white squares with 1/7 above them just under the image. David
It is bronze, by the way.
I suppose Dora Gordine might be a possibility.
Does Wolverhampton have any provenance information, such as when and from what source the bust entered the collection?
The full face photo does indeed suggest 1940's-1950's but on looking at the other views it is clear that the hair above the forehead is not in a war time "roll" which would have been held in place with pins. (My mother's style at that time.) My hunch would be to look at the 60-70's. My own hairstyle back then was almost identical with the annoyance of being unable to stop the front curled hair from flopping forward.
Jacinto, they do not have any acquisition information recorded on their database available to them now, but when they are back in the Gallery they will check their paper files. David
John Meirion Morris's work is perhaps similar: https://artuk.org/discover/artists/morris-john-meirion-19362020
I expect it could be early 1960s, but I rather doubt 1970s, and I still think 1950s is quite plausible. If we are lucky, the date of acquisition may help with dating the piece.
Enigmatic features, this is ringing a bell but I can’t yet put a finger on it - it is certainly worth contacting the Royal Society of Sculptors at Dora House, SW7 about this.
Please do report back to the site with the answer, it really would be fascinating to know who the subject is and by whom....
All v best wishes for your Quest!
I have wondered if Thomas Bayliss Huxley-Jones because of Chelmsford discussion? I feel some similarities in style, here for example https://artuk.org/discover/artworks/doris-willis-250910/search/actor:huxley-jones-thomas-bayliss-19081968/page/1/view_as/grid. Probably a coincidence but Mapping Sculpture page https://sculpture.gla.ac.uk/view/person.php?id=msib6_1212681379 notes ‘Head of a girl’ in 1951.
Interesting thought, David. It's worth looking into, but Huxley-Jones seems to have had a more naturalistic style, and this head feels different to me, though that's hardly evidence.