Loan Collection of Contemporary British Art

Christopher Wood – Paris Snow Scene

The Loan Collection of Contemporary British Art was a touring exhibition that was sent out to areas of the Empire to show the progress of British Art. The exhibition toured Australia and New Zealand in 1934.

Below is the text from the exhibition booklet, along with paintings from the exhibition. I think it is important to look at what was exhibited and presented to the world via the Art Exhibitions Bureau.

Philip Connard – The Abbey Ruins

Over five years ago the idea was conceived of bringing outlying
communities of the British Empire into closer touch with “a greater
field of Art” than they, in their isolated positions, could hope for.

William Roberts – The Chess Players

Apart from the many excellent exhibitions of “Fine Art” provided from time to time by commercial enterprise, we, in these distant
parts, have been, and are debarred from the pleasure of seeing and
studying those Great Works which find their homes in Public Galleries
and Private Collections of the old world.

William Nicholson – A Bloomsbury Family (His brother in law)

Impressed with the great number of surplus works in Galleries
in Great Britain which might be made available, as also the hope that
National pictures might be available on loan, and the fact that
there were many public spirited private owners and Trustees of
Galleries who would welcome the opportunity to loan their treasures
for view throughout the Empire, the sympathetic support of men high
up in the Art world at Home was enlisted, and through the able and
untiring devotion of Mr. J. B. Manson, Director of the Tate Gallery,
Mr. Ernest Marsh and Mr. C. R. Chisman, the Empire Art Loan Collections Society was formed .

Ambrose McEvoy – The Green Hat, a portrait of Mrs Claude Johnson, 1918

The names of the original members of the General Committee are sufficient guarantee that the idea struck a note which appealed to those responsible for the promotion of Art in Great Britain, and that it is being pushed with vigour against considerable handicaps.

Gerald Leslie Brockhurst – Portrait of James McBey