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A Girl and Goats

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A Girl and Goats About 1891 - 1892

Not on display

  • Scottish Art
During the 1890s, Hornel moved away from the realism of his early work to a more consciously decorative form of representation. He was influenced by the work of the French painter Monticelli, whose paintings he encountered in the International Exhibitions of 1886 and 1888 in Edinburgh and Glasgow. Hornel took on the decorative style of Monticelli, which had a flatness similar to Japanese prints. Here, Hornel has used a typically flat Japanese composition and high horizon. The figure and goats are painted in thick impasto. The subject of the picture appears almost secondary to the abstract arrangement of the colours and forms which overwhelm the picture area. It may have been inspired by Arthur Melville’s ‘Audrey and Her Goats’ (Tate) of 1883-9, which was based on Shakespeare’s ‘As You Like It’.

Glossary Open


The arrangement of different elements in a work of art.


The textured surface of a painting resulting from the thick application of paint.


An image pressed or stamped onto paper or fabric. This encompasses a wide variety of techniques, usually produced in multiples, although one-off prints, known as monoprints, are also included. The term is also applied to photographic images.


Used generally for art that attempts to represent things as they appear. It specifically refers to a mid-19th century movement in France, led by Gustave Courbet, that rejected the sometimes obscure subject matter of academic painting in favour of more accessible scenes of everyday life.

Composition, Impasto, Print, Realism


  • Acc. No. NG 2145
  • Medium Oil on canvas
  • Size 39.00 x 32.00 cm (framed: 59.80 x 53.20 x 7.30 cm)
  • Credit Bequest of Sir James Lewis Caw 1951