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Artwork of the Month February 2015

aotm feb 2015

Artwork of the Month - February 2015

About the artist, Barry:

Sir Claude Francis Barry had a difficult childhood after the death of his mother when he was only two years old.  When his father Sir Edward Barry remarried, Barry became increasingly excluded from his father's new family. He sought solace in his art and was tutored by Sir Alfred East, who became a lifelong mentor and friend.

From 1905 Barry lived in St Ives, as well as spending time in Europe between the Wars. After the Second World War he left St Ives to live on Jersey. It was during this period that he painted many of his portraits.

About the subject, Marshall:

The singer Mary Marshall was born in Bolton. She first had a solo career before becoming a member of the group "The Three Shades". She accepted a contract to perform in the Channel Islands for the entertainment promoter, Sydney James. Marshall settled in Guernsey after marrying James in 1960.

Sir Claude was a great admirer of Marshall's stage presence and beauty and asked if he could paint her portrait.  Marshall agreed, resulting in this head and shoulder portrait as well as a full length portrait which was exhibited in the Paris Salon.