The conversation, George Bell
  • Artist
    George Bell
  • Born
    1878
  • Died
    1966
  • Title
    The conversation
  • Date of Production
    1910
  • Medium
    oil on canvas
  • Dimensions
    126.6 x 152.6 cm
  • Credit Details
    Gift of Antoinette Niven, 1968

George Bell

The conversation

George Bell, who studied at the National Gallery of Victoria School, continued his studies in Paris and London in the early 1900's. One of his early formal paintings, The conversation was painted when he was overseas and was first exhibited at the Modern Society of Portrait Painters in 1911.

Praised by Arthur Streeton in the Argus on the 14th September 1920 for "the vigour of the brushwork…. charm of colour (and) strength of drawing", the painting is thought to depict the artists George Lambert and Thea Proctor, and at the far right, Mrs Amy Lambert, all dressed in elegant evening dress. The tactile quality of the clothing, especially the subtle layering of colour in the fabrics; the texture of Thea Proctor's dress; and the bead embroidered fabric of Mrs Lambert's sleeve is emphasized by the light falling on the women who are gathered on a balcony with the faint lights of the city below.