Louisa Waterford and John Ruskin
'For you have not Falsely Praised'

Caroline Ings-Chambers

Legenda (General Series)

Legenda

16 March 2015  •  264pp

ISBN: 978-1-909662-47-6 (hardback)  •  RRP £75, $99, €85

ModernEnglishArt


Louisa Waterford (1818–91), modest, retiring, of good family, renowned for her beauty, and with extraordinary grace, was the embodiment of a Victorian ideal of womanhood. Like the age itself, her life was filled with contrasts and paradoxes.

She had been born with artistic gifts, and became a satellite of the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood, though she had no formal training. Then, at the height of John Ruskin’s intellectual power and success as a critic, she asked him to accept her as an art student, and he accepted. His correspondence with her — often harshly critical, never, as Waterford put it, falsely praising — lies at the heart of this book. These are letters which open a spectrum of discussion on the cultural, gender and social issues of the period. Both Waterford and Ruskin engaged in tireless philanthropic work for diverse causes, crossing social boundaries with subtle determination, and both responded to a sense of duty as well as an artistic vocation. More than a mere reflection of contemporary society, as Ings-Chambers shows, their dialogue helped to make Waterford the artist she became.

Caroline Ings-Chambers runs courses in nineteenth century literature and culture at Morley College, London.

Reviews:

  • ‘This book is a valuable revelation of a little-known figure. Lady Waterford is shown both to have been acutely sensitive to the cultural currents of her day and to have been a strong talent in her own right.’ — John Batchelor, Modern Language Review 111.4, October 2016, 1128-29 (full text online)
  • ‘Ings‐Chambers builds a strong case for reintegrating this artist in the wider Pre‐Raphaelite canon. Her writing makes Waterford’s art come across as essential thanks to its charm, vision and social/gender relevance.’ — Nic Peeters, Pre-Raphaelite Society Journal XXIII, 2015, 63-66

Bibliography entry:

Ings-Chambers, Caroline, Louisa Waterford and John Ruskin: 'For you have not Falsely Praised' (Cambridge: Legenda, 2015)

First footnote reference: 35 Caroline Ings-Chambers, Louisa Waterford and John Ruskin: 'For you have not Falsely Praised' (Cambridge: Legenda, 2015), p. 21.

Subsequent footnote reference: 37 Ings-Chambers, p. 47.

(To see how these citations were worked out, follow this link.)

Bibliography entry:

Ings-Chambers, Caroline. 2015. Louisa Waterford and John Ruskin: 'For you have not Falsely Praised' (Cambridge: Legenda)

Example citation: ‘A quotation occurring on page 21 of this work’ (Ings-Chambers 2015: 21).

Example footnote reference: 35 Ings-Chambers 2015: 21.

(To see how these citations were worked out, follow this link.)


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