1898 - 1992
linocut in 3 colours, 1931
signed, titled and editioned 32/60
12 1/4 x 8 3/8 in, 31.1 x 21.3 cm
Estimate: $15,000 - $25,000
Sold for: $34,250
Preview at: Heffel Calgary
DeVooght Gallery, Vancouver
Private Collection, Alberta
Redfern Gallery, London, Sybil Andrews and Cyril E. Power, January 5 - 28, 1933, catalogue #60
Peter White, Sybil Andrews, Glenbow Museum, 1982, reprodcued page 53, catalogue #14
Stephen Coppel, Linocuts of the Machine Age, 1995, page 110, reproduced page 110, catalogue #SA 14
Gordon Samuel and Nicola Penny, The Cutting Edge of Modernity: Linocuts of the Grosvenor School, 2002, reproduced page 43
Hana Leaper, Sybil Andrews Linocuts: A Complete Catalogue, 2015, page 26, reproduced page 61
Redfern Gallery, London, British Lino-Cuts 1931, closed August 1, 1931, catalogue #21, same image
Redfern Gallery, London, Sybil Andrews and Cyril E. Power, January 5 - 28, 1933, catalogue #60, same image
Glenbow Museum, Calgary, Sybil Andrews, 1982, catalogue #14, same image
Sybil Andrews was part of the Grosvenor School in England, a group of artists working in linocut who were influenced by the cutting-edge modernist movements of Futurism, Vorticism and Cubism. The Grosvenor School artists considered linocut to be the perfect medium for their work. As Hana Leaper wrote, “Linocutting…demanded directness and dynamism. It limited the number of colours that could be used and the amount of detail that could be included, forcing the artists to translate the world around them into abstracted shapes and to use colour cleverly to express rather than depict detail.”
Sport fascinated Andrews and the other Grosvenor School artists, for it provided them with the opportunity to convey speed, fluidity and the expression of physical exertion. The movement and sheer exhilaration of sport made it an ideal subject for Andrews to convey her modernist aesthetic. During the 1920s, the public appeal of sports, both participatory and spectator, rose. Physical culture and fitness became an ideal in society, even to the point of considering the human body to be an organic machine that could be perfected. A number of Andrews’s most famous linocuts concern sport, including Steeplechasing (1930), In Full Cry (1931), Racing (1934), Speedway (1934), Football (1937), Skaters (1953) and this superb early work.
Water Jump makes a strong impression with its emphatic contrasts between bold, simple planes of black, grey and white, which are enlivened by orange-red highlights. The legs of the white horse are elongated, heightening the impression of motion, and the black horse clearing the barrier directly behind pushes the sense of competitive action further. Typical of Andrews’s work, the faces of both riders and horses are undefined and their bodies are abstracted into simplified forms, which emphasizes her bold, muscular use of line and form. In this powerful linocut, Andrews adeptly captured both pairs of competitors moving in tandem, each poised to perfectly execute their jump.
This print is a fine impression on thin cream oriental laid paper. This work is recorded in the Sybil Andrews print notebook, in the collection of the Glenbow Museum.
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