THE ART GALLERY.
The latest addition to the W.A. Art Gallery consists of a copy by Mrs. A.
C. Potter of the well-known “Head of Girl,” by Greuze, in the London
National Gallery. The reputation of this great French painter, Jean
Baptiste Greuze (1727-1805), rests on his genre painting of domestic
scenes and faces. His works must not be judged by comparison with those of
modern painters, but with those of his own time and of his predecessors,
when they will appear simple, natural, and moral, although by the side of
a Reynolds or a Millais they may seem to have a touch of affectation, and
are certainly wanting in the unconsciousness in the girls painted by them.
Nothing is known of the subject of this portrait on which Campbell wrote
the following lines :—
What wert thou, maid?—thy life—thy name
Oblivion hides in mystery :
Though from thy face my heart could frame
A long romantic history.
Transported to thy time I seem,
Though dust they coffin covers—
And hear the songs, in fancy’s dream
Of thy devoted lovers.
How witching must have been thy breath—
How sweet the living charmer—
Whose every semblance after death
Can make the heart grow warmer.