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Sir Thomas Monnington:
Study for St. Luke's Printing Works, c. 1935
Passe-partout (ref: 1048)
Red chalk and pencil on tracing paper, squared in pencil for transfer, 18 1/2 x 12 in. (47 x 30 cm.)
Provenance: Evelyn Monnington.
Literature: Judy Egerton, Sir Thomas Monnington, Royal Academy 1977
Monnington began studies for 'St. Luke's Printing Works', his third Bank of England picture, in 1934. He completed the cartoon in 1936. The finished painting is the same width as the cartoon but a few inches higher. It was completed in October 1937, with the assistance of L. J. Watson, one of his recent students at the Royal College of Art.
The cartoon illustrates Monnington's methods of controlling perspective, learned from Piero della Francesca. The spectator's viewpoint is the top of the cupboard below which parallel lines, graduated and numbered at the side, measure the distance leading in to the picture.
The three men portrayed are, from left to right, W. W. E. Paddick, Labourer; S. B. Chamberlain, General Works Manager; and J. R. Dudin, Supervisor of the Printing Section. The three girls are drawn from models (see no. 24). The downward gaze of the girl handling banknote paper is Madonna-like; but her hands and wrists have been drawn from accurate observation of the deft and practised movements of printing operatives.