Study for the Laidley Worm by Walter Crane

This watercolour is a study for an oil painting by the artist of 1881, The Laidley Worm of Spindleston Heugh.


Pen & brown ink & brown watercolour wash heightened with white
14.9 x 44.2 cm
Art Fund grant:
£2,000 ( Total: £8,000)
Acquired in:
W/S Fine Art Ltd

The subject is taken from a Northumberland legend which tells of a princess transformed into a serpent, only restored to her true form by a brotherly kiss. The choice of subject reflects the taste of the Pre-Raphaelites, who were an influence on Crane. The drawing is a finished study but differs from the oil painting and shows the development of the composition. It also contains an element of landscape painting, with a view of Bamburgh Castle in the distance on the right.


Hill Stone, New York; W/S Fine Art Ltd, London.

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