May Morning, Oxford

May Morning, Oxford by Holman Hunt. Traditional celebration of 1st May, choristers sing at dawn from the top of Magdalen Tower. Morris Dancers twirl in the street below, students use it as an excuse to party all night. Holman Hunt’s detailed rendition of the choir members included famous faces of the day. Hunt also designed the frame of the picture – a masterpiece in sculpted copper.  The painting is in The Lady Lever Art Gallery, Port Sunlight, near Liverpool. Holman Hunt was a founding member of the PRB – Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood – a group of Victorian artists notably Rossetti, Millais and Holman Hunt – who painted in a bold, colourful style, paintings filled with symbolism and myths. The PRB paintings were very popular with the wealthy industrialists of the time – especially Lord Lever, later Viscount Leverhulme – who built up a large collection.

#PRB #HolmanHunt #Rossetti #Millais

For a little more on the Pre-Raphaelites: Lord Leighton and The Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood

 

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