The Bay of Tunis, Morning (1919), John Lavery

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John Lavery's Tunisian Sojourn, The Bay of Tunis, Morning

In 1919, John Lavery and his wife, Hazel, embarked on a journey to Sidi bou Said, a picturesque hilltop village in Tunisia. Their invitation came from Rodolphe d'Erlanger, a friend and patron who had recently renovated a Moorish palace known as Dar Ennejma Ezzahra. This trip marked a welcome respite for Lavery, who had been tirelessly working as an Official War Artist during the Great War.

Sidi bou Said's dazzling white buildings reminded Lavery of his beloved Tangier, and he was immediately captivated by the town's beauty. Inspired by his surroundings, Lavery created a series of stunning views of the Bay of Tunis, each capturing the tranquility and vibrancy of the Tunisian landscape.

Among these works, Sidi bu Said, Tunis, 1919 stands out as a masterpiece of Lavery's Tunisian sojourn. The painting depicts a panoramic view of the bay, with the twin peaks of Mount Bou Kornine dominating the horizon. The calm waters of the inlet divide the composition into two halves, creating a sense of balance and harmony.

Lavery's use of light and color is masterful in this work. The sunlit cerulean expanse of the sea contrasts with the pale sky, while the whitewashed buildings of Sidi bou Said stand out against the lush vegetation. The overall effect is one of serenity and tranquility, reminiscent of the Japanese prints that had influenced Lavery's work in his youth.

The Bay of Tunis, Morning, 1919 is a testament to Lavery's ability to capture the essence of a place and evoke a sense of beauty and tranquility. It serves as a reminder of the artist's profound connection to Morocco and North Africa, and his ability to find inspiration in the most unexpected places.

Available as a fine art print and as a stretched canvas panel (heavy fine art canvas stretched over 1.5 inch deep edge solid wood frame).


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