News from nowhere - short pieces to get you thinking...


There’s this pervasive belief in modern society that change is always good. The concept of ‘progress’ implies that things can only get better. But is this really the case? In the mid-19th century a group of young, rebellious painters in London shunned the art world of their day in favour of following influences from late-medieval and early-Renaissance Europe (at least prior to the Renaissance master Raphael, hence their name Pre-Raphaelite). The tight-knit brotherhood - William Holman Hunt, Dante Gabriel Rossetti and John Everett Millais - set out their reform agenda in 1848 at Millais’ parents’ house on Gower Street, London. At a time when 19th century England was overthrown by the revolution of industry - mass industrialisation - the artists romanticised old times, when nature ruled and moral issues of justice, piety and familial relationships were revered, rather than machinery and profit.


Image: Mariana in the Moated Grange, 1851 (oil on panel), Sir John Everett Millais (1829-96)


From issue #5 of Womankind magazine - click here to subscribe now