Flora Glover studied Fine Art at King’s College, University of Durham. After graduating in 1940 she went on to teach Art at the University. She died tragically young, on the 23rd September 1944, at the age of 25, after a riding accident.
She was much influenced by the painting of the Quattrocento; her highly distinctive fused the Vorticist aesthetic with the lyrial Decorative Painting of Stanley Spencer. Her best known painting, The Flood, c. 1941, is in the collection of the Laing Art Gallery.
Clearly Glover artist was familiar with the Vorticist compositions, especially of David Bomberg in the emergence of the figures from grid-like areas of the composition and their beseeching gesture; and Stanley Spencer, with the suggestion of Resurrection: the figures in the lower left are either disappearing into the green ground or emerging from it. The intimations of warfare in the shape of planes, tanks and cannon, are reminiscent both of William Roberts’ commissioned war work and that of Wyndham Lewis – though less harshly stylised.
The composition is highly accomplished. The palette is very closely controlled and distinctive, resting predominantly within hues of brown and green. The graphic quality has much in common with print makers such as Blair Hughes Stanton, Getrude Hermes and Lynd Ward. The subject matter brings to mind of the tract produced by the angry pacifist socialist Arthur Wragg, ‘Jesus Wept’, published by Selwyn & Blount London (1934)
The subject, an Allegory of War and Peace shows suited figures at a conference table (a reference possibly to the Locarno Treaty, signed October 1925), but the calls for disarmament are doomed to fail set against a backdrop that depicts a the landscape of Post-War industrial reconstruction with a tank and a warship emerging from factories. In the lower left hand corner there is a 9.2 inch siege howitzer – the same calibre as the gun on Jagger’s Hyde Park Corner artillery memorial (unveiled October 1925).
The shape is very distinctive- almost as if this was for a mural scheme; perhaps a Memorial after WW1. If that were the case it is so highly evolved that it might be a proposal or a finished design; possibly one of several panels for a site specific commission. However most permanent memorial sites were pretty orthodox with an emphasis on valour and nationhood, which would make this (proposed?) scheme something out of the ordinary.
We are grateful to Sarah Richardson, Dr. Jonathan Black, Emma Mawdsley, Ian Jack, David Willey, Dr Gill Clarke, Andrew Cormack, David Buckman, Grant Waters, Geoff Hassell, Roger Bowdler, Peyton Skipwith, Alan Powers and Sarah MacDougal for assistance<