Dangerous cast iron cogs and heavy wooden rollers in this domestic mangle – children were forbidden to touch

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In 1940-50s South-London there were few washing machines. The mother of Anthony Sargeant did not have one but she did have a cast-iron mangle such as this which was housed in the shed at the bottom of the garden. The shed was in fact a re-purposed corrugated iron from a WW2 Anderson bomb shelter. All laundry was done in a large heated copper boiler in the kitchen using a thick wooden pole to stir it around (the thick pole rather like a metre long broom handle also had another use – it was sometimes used to whack Tony when his Mother deemed him to have misbehaved). Heavily soiled pieces of laundry were additionally rubbed on a washing board at the large ceramic sink in the kitchen. After rinsing out the soapy water in the sink the wet laundry was carried up the garden and put through the the wooden rollers of the mangle to squeeze out as much water as possible. The washing was then pegged out along the clothes line which ran the length of the garden. This was not advisable if the wind was coming from the direction of the local gasworks which was less than half a mile away, because at certain stages of the manufacture of Town Gas the coking ovens door would be opened and the wind would carry sooty smuts across the neighbourhood.

via Mangle used to wring out water from laundry on wash-day – which was usually Monday — Anthony J Sargeant in 1966

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G.Mazzolini painted this picture of ‘Cherubs playing in a landscape’ in the 19th Century

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In a lovely carved Italian frame this painting of cherubs amused Anthony Sargeant some 30 years ago when he saw it in a provincial auction. He plans to sell it through Bonhams in Knightsbridge in the next few months. If you are interested keep an eye on Bonhams listings for 19th Century art.

Buildwas Abbey near Ironbridge, Shopshire, England.

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This photograph taken by Anthony J Sargeant in 2011 shows an archway in  the ruined 12th century Cistercian Abbey close to Ironbridge in Shropshire.

Although without a roof the basic structure of this magnificent church is intact.

The Cistercian Abbey of St Mary and St Chad was founded in 1135 by Roger de ClintonBishop of Coventry (1129–1148) as a Savignac monastery and was inhabited by a small community of monks from Furness Abbey. The stone from which it was built was quarried in the nearby settlement of Broseley.

The abbey was closed in 1536 by the order of Henry VIII during the Dissolution of the Monasteries.

Anthony J Sargeant owns this portrait etching of Ernest Sichel by the Scottish Artist William Strang, RA.

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This is a detail of an etching made by William Strang of one of his collaborators, Ernest Sichel which is among 24 etchings owned by Anthony J Sargeant.

For the first twenty years of his career, Strang practised primarily as a printmaker. Although he did paint, he did not begin to exhibit his paintings until the early 1890s. From the mid-1890s he started to become increasingly occupied with more lucrative portrait commissions and began to shift the emphasis of his art from etching to painting and drawing. However, he continued to work as a printmaker throughout his career. In 1918 he became President of the International Society of Sculptors, Painters and Gravers and in 1921 was elected an Engraver Member of the Royal Academy. He died suddenly in 1921, shortly after his election as Royal Academician.

Somewhat eerie etching by William Strang RA in the collection of Anthony J Sargeant

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During his lifetime, Dumbarton-born William Strang (1859 – 1921) built up an international reputation as a highly skilled and imaginative printmaker, portraitist and painter. His diverse subjects ranged from the fantastic to the very real, including uncompromising depictions of contemporary life and the effects of poverty and social injustice, landscapes, subjects from the bible, bewildering allegories, and narrative illustrations. He was also a prolific and highly successful portraitist.

via Etching ‘The Visit’ by William Strang RA in the collection of Anthony J Sargeant — TONY Anthony SARGEANT