The Paintings of Ivor John Powell

The vision of a border Welshman

Sideboard with Roses by Ivor Powell

34. Sideboard with Roses

cm. Canvas with home-made frame

Private Collection

It is not easy to date this study of the sideboard in his living room, but it is likely to have been one of Ivor's first still life studies. As a painting for his wife, the obvious choice of subject would have been her flower display in the living room. Winifred had a particular liking for Wedgwood blue and, for many years, the living room walls were painted in this colour. It helped him to produce this subtle and finely crafted painting. The sideboard had a central mirror, as he showed it, reflecting the top of the fireplace opposite. The items in the composition are accurately presented - the shape of the clock, the vase, the dish, the saltcellar and Winifred's own embroidered flowers on her cloth, were all there. This is, therefore, a rare example of Ivor painting what he saw before him as he sat at his dining table, though, even then, he did not let the actual get in the way of his own aesthetic requirements. The mirror, so necessarily completely in view to perform its function in the painting, would have been far closer to the clock, even partly hidden by it, in reality. As any competent still life painter would, he placed each item to meet the needs of his composition.

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