John Ruskin, Amalfi

Ruskin and the Practice of Drawing

13 January - 25 March 2001

With pictures by American artist David-Everett Blythe.

This display focused on John Ruskin's engagement in the teaching of what he called “the practice of drawing”. It included examples of his own work showing the development of his drawing style and his interest in practical techniques. Subjects of drawings by Ruskin featured in this exhibition included Avranches (Normandy, France), Watendlath Tarn (Cumbria, England) and Amalfi (Salerno, Italy).

John Ruskin: Watendlath Tarn, 1838

Also included in the display were beautiful watercolours inspired by this “practice of drawing” by the teacher, scholar and artist David-Everett Blythe. Blythe has published work on nineteenth-century English literature, including articles about Ruskin himself. Over many years, he has made watercolour copies of pictures by Ruskin, as well as Constable, Turner and other artists. In following Ruskin, Blythe tried to adhere to his guidelines and reproduce techniques featured in writings such as The Elements of Drawing.