• Millais

    Millais and Music

    Did you know Pre-Raphaelite artist Sir John Everett Millais wrote song lyrics? To Psyche   “O Psyche, what a chance thou lost When Cupid was thy swain! Thou mightst have cut his tiny wings Too close to grow again,   And cast his quiver far away, His crimson roses shorn Of cruel barbs, and left to us The rose without…

  • Shakespeare

    Celebrating Shakespeare

    Happy Birthday to William Shakespeare, born on this day in 1564.  Today is also the anniversary of the Bard’s death.  Dare I say it?  Dying on your birthday is a dramatically Shakespearean thing to do. When a young group of artists founded the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood in 1848 they drew up a list of ‘Immortals’, made up of artists and historical…

  • Nature

    It’s Earth Day!

    In Modern Painters, John Ruskin urged artists to “go to nature in all singleness of heart… rejecting nothing, selecting nothing and scorning nothing; believing all things to be right and good, and rejoicing always in the truth.” The Pre-Raphaelites and their followers took this advice to heart. In Millais’ Ophelia, for example, we can see botanical details recreated with beautiful…

  • Dante Gabriel Rossetti,  Elizabeth Siddal,  ghosts,  Keats,  Millais

    Halloween, Pre-Raphaelites, and Keats

    I think Sir John Everett Millais’ painting Speak! Speak! is a perfect Pre-Raphaelite image to share on Halloween.   The ghost of a bride appears to her love.  He reaches out to her, urging her to speak. It’s a haunting image and the concept had been on the artist’s mind for forty years before he began to paint it. “The…