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Tom Gurney BSc (Hons) is an art history expert with over 20 years experience
Published on June 19, 2020 / Updated on October 14, 2023
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Ford Madox Brown may not have been the most deeply documented of artists but there is still a considerable amount of information that has been uncovered from his life, including quotations and written correspondence.

Famous Quotes by Ford Madox Brown

What a miserable sad thing it is to be fit for painting only and nothing else.

I assure you, Hunt, I never was so astonished in my whole life. Millais is no longer merely a very satisfactory fulfiller of the sanguine expectations of his prejudiced friends, he is a master of the most exalted proficiency, no one since Titian has ever painted a picture with such exquisite passages of handling and colour, and these charms, with a rare naiveté of character of his own, make the work astonishingly enchanting.

My Dear Hunt — I could not pass this evening in peace if I did not write to tell you how noble I think sur picture. I went up to see it after some resistance on the partof your landlady. I can scarcely describe the emotions I felt on finding myself alone with your beautiful work (quite finished and you out, that was something of a triumph), but certainly your picture makes me feel shame that I have not done more in all the years I have worked. You will now have one long course of triumph, I believe—well you deserve it. Your picture seems to me without fault and beautiful to its minutest detail, and I do not think that there is a man in England that could do a finer work ; it is fine all over. I have been to see Millais. His pictures are wonders in colour and truth; in fine, admirable for all they intend, but I like yours better for my own use, although there are qualities in Millais which never have been attained, and perhaps never again will be. If Rossetti will only work, you will form a trio which will play a great part in English art, in spite of Egg's predictions. I mean to be much more careful in future, and try next time to satisfy myself. I wish I had seen you to-night, for I am full of your picture, and should like to shake you by the hand. I have had serious thoughts of joining [sic] P.R.B. on my pictures this year, but in the first place I am rather old to play the fool, or least what would be thought to be doing so; in the next place do not feel confident enough how the picture will look, and unless very much liked I would not do it, but the best reason against it is that we may be of more service to each other as we are than openly bound together. I wish you all the success you deserve.

Letter to William Holman Hunt

Quotes about Ford Madox Brown by Academics and Related Artists

Ford Madox Brown was a British painter of moral and historical subjects, notable for his distinctively graphic and often Hogarthian version of the Pre-Raphaelite style. Arguably, his most notable painting was Work. Brown spent the latter years of his life painting the twelve works known as The Manchester Murals, depicting Mancunian history, for Manchester Town Hall.