Possible design (‘The Proposal’?) for a piece of Staffordshire ware. The Cedars, the Dunbar family home in Strood, contained several such pieces, mostly collected by the artist’s mother Florence. Alternatively this might be an early essay in still-life, made by Dunbar at her mother’s knee, as it were. Dunbar still-lifes are rare. Maybe this is one of the mere seven known to exist. Still-life was never Dunbar’s genre. For her life was never still, never unproductive: life had to move, to seethe, to regenerate, to be vital and compelling. In almost the totality of her work people are present, people moving, working, playing, fulfilling her calling to express creation, and mankind’s relationship with it, in all its energy and power, actual and spiritual.
We are grateful to Christopher Campbell-Howes for assistance.