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Go Back   Casebook Forums > Ripper Discussions > Suspects > Sickert, Walter

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  #11  
Old 04-20-2008, 03:09 PM
Limehouse Limehouse is offline
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After further research it appears that this portrait is not the only portrait of Mrs Barrett. The real Mrs Barrett was Sickert's charlady and she posed for several paintings, this being just one. If you can track down one of the other Mrs Barrett paintings you will find it is a harmless, rather charming portrait of a lady in a red blouse.
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  #12  
Old 04-20-2008, 04:47 PM
Celesta Celesta is offline
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This is the black and white sketch from the blog that Chris Scott linked us to. This looks like a mutilated face to me, but it also looks decayed. I have rotated it 90 degrees, so that the figure is lying, in the same position, as MJK's on her bed. I don't know when this drawing was done, or whether or not it was influenced by Picasso and his bunch. The tip of the woman's nose is chopped off.

Now, alternatively, this could be a study of a decayed body, perhaps. Or an anatomy study. It certainly is a dead person.

However the positioning of the hair is very like that of MJK to me, and absolutely the position of the head is.



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  #13  
Old 04-20-2008, 04:58 PM
bolo bolo is offline
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Limehouse,

Yes, Sickert created several Mrs Barrett paintings. The most famous version is the one Steven Knight referred to in Final Solution, the revised 1984 hardcover ed. contains a b/w reproduction of the painting created in 1906 (pp. 154 - 155.). According to Knight and friends, it was a picture of Mary Kelly.

I recommend anyone interest in Sickert, his paintings and their "relevance" to the case to check out Wolf Vanderlinden's casebook dissertation The Art of Murder which can be found here: http://www.casebook.org/dissertation...tofmurder.html .

EDIT: I've googled a bit to find a picture of this particular version but could only find this:

http://books.google.de/books?id=4S5K...Z_8hEbNI&hl=de

It's a preview version of Wendy Baron's book Sickert: Paintings & Drawings (not dialup-friendly!).
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Last edited by bolo : 04-20-2008 at 05:26 PM.
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  #14  
Old 04-20-2008, 05:55 PM
Sarah D Sarah D is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Celesta View Post
This is the black and white sketch from the blog that Chris Scott linked us to. This looks like a mutilated face to me, but it also looks decayed. I have rotated it 90 degrees, so that the figure is lying, in the same position, as MJK's on her bed. I don't know when this drawing was done, or whether or not it was influenced by Picasso and his bunch. The tip of the woman's nose is chopped off.

Now, alternatively, this could be a study of a decayed body, perhaps. Or an anatomy study. It certainly is a dead person.

However the positioning of the hair is very like that of MJK to me, and absolutely the position of the head is.



Attachment 1332
If you had read, it is actually the police sketch of MJK from the crime scene
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  #15  
Old 04-20-2008, 05:55 PM
paul emmett paul emmett is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Limehouse View Post
That is someone's interpretation of what they think they can see which, to be frank, is no more valid than anyone elses interpretation.
Hello, Limehouse. While I do agree with the dark side of Victorian novelists, or Victorians themselves for that matter, I disagree with the above assertion. If I said I saw six Martians and a pink computer in "Mrs. B", I don't buy into the subjectivity that says my interpretation is just as valid as the rest of 'em. Proof must have something to do with it. And as I suggested above, I was happy that someone else had seen just what I saw. And, while not 100%, to me that seems like some kind of proof.

What do you make of the alternative title of BLACKMAIL?
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  #16  
Old 04-20-2008, 06:01 PM
Limehouse Limehouse is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Celesta View Post
This is the black and white sketch from the blog that Chris Scott linked us to. This looks like a mutilated face to me, but it also looks decayed. I have rotated it 90 degrees, so that the figure is lying, in the same position, as MJK's on her bed. I don't know when this drawing was done, or whether or not it was influenced by Picasso and his bunch. The tip of the woman's nose is chopped off.

Now, alternatively, this could be a study of a decayed body, perhaps. Or an anatomy study. It certainly is a dead person.

However the positioning of the hair is very like that of MJK to me, and absolutely the position of the head is.



Attachment 1332
Sorry Celesta, but I cannot accept this person's arguments at all. That sketch appears to have been made by the lady blogger herself from something she sees in Sickert's painting "The Prostitute at Home'. She apparently sees mutilations in the face that I cannot see at all. Sure, the lady in the painting has a well-worn face, as you might expect of a prostitute of that class but mutilations? It seems to me to be pure fantasy.

She is taking a selection of Sickert's paintings and completely twisting their composition to fit a crank theory. I am sorry, I know we are not supposed to say such things about other people's views on this Forum but it does make me so mad. I mean, her interpretation of 'Two women on a Sofa' has them as dried up corpses! Honestly, has she seen these paintings for real? Does she know anything at all about Sickert and his work?

So, Sickert used some dark and murky topics for some of his paintings but so do MANY artists and of course not ALL of Sickert's work is concerned with these topics.

You might as well say that Conan-Doyle was a closet killer because he wrote about murder and mayhem. You might as well probe the mind of Bram Stoker for to find murderous intent for the creation of Dracula.

Look at the paintings of Picasso. The faces of his women were often chopped about, composed, decomposed and recomposed. It was his style.

Sickert was inspired by artists such as Degas (who painted many nudes) and Lautrec - whose topics included music halls, colourful ladies of the night - simply as a reaction against Victorian hypocrisy. He was showing the world what was really out there.

Even if there were 'secrets' painted into his work, maybe like us, he was simply searching for an answer.
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  #17  
Old 04-20-2008, 06:07 PM
Stephen Thomas Stephen Thomas is offline
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Originally Posted by BillyE View Post
I've seen the above painting, but I've always associated "Blackmail or Mrs. Barrett" as the painting of "Mary Kelly" according to Stephen Knight. Anyway, has anyone seen or have a jpeg of "Blackmail"? It's the one painting of Sickert's I can't find on the net.
This is the picture
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  #18  
Old 04-20-2008, 06:09 PM
Limehouse Limehouse is offline
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Originally Posted by paul emmett View Post
Hello, Limehouse. While I do agree with the dark side of Victorian novelists, or Victorians themselves for that matter, I disagree with the above assertion. If I said I saw six Martians and a pink computer in "Mrs. B", I don't buy into the subjectivity that says my interpretation is just as valid as the rest of 'em. Proof must have something to do with it. And as I suggested above, I was happy that someone else had seen just what I saw. And, while not 100%, to me that seems like some kind of proof.

What do you make of the alternative title of BLACKMAIL?
Hi Paul,

Of course, I agree, there has to be some sense of proportion and logic when debating what can be interpreted (although, as some people can see a lobster and others the act of murder, it just goes to show what the human eye and mind really can trick one into thinking) but in no way can anything 'seen' in a Sickert painting be held up as proof that he was the murderer.

What do I make of the alternative title? Well, the lady in the forefront of the picture looks to be well-dressed and there is, to me, a triumphant glint in her eye.

The spread legs you can see in the reflection, drevealed themselves to me on closer inspection. Between those legs seems to be a person.

Perhaps the title refers to something witnessed by the triumphant 'Mrs Barrett'. Perhaps she (or whoever she really represents) witnessed an infidelity that resulted in blackmail. It may well refer to a famous blackmail case of the time.

It is interesting that the 'Mrs Barrett' looks nothing like the lady in the "Red Blouse' painting.

Regards

Limehouse
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  #19  
Old 04-20-2008, 06:13 PM
Celesta Celesta is offline
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LH,

I don't see a lot of similarities to Eddowes' mutilations either. I wasn't saying Sickert was the Ripper, just that he seemed very interested in the Ripper and that that is reflected in his work.

There is another 'Blackmail', that I came across, of a woman, in a pink blouse that more closely resembles the one in the painting posted at the beginning of this thread. It's called "Venetian Woman," and came up when I googled the title "Blackmail."


Name:  VenetianWoman(Blackmail).jpg
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Here is the link to the site from which I extracted the above:

http://cybermuse.gallery.ca/cybermus....jsp?mkey=3873
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Last edited by Celesta : 04-20-2008 at 06:29 PM.
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  #20  
Old 04-20-2008, 06:19 PM
paul emmett paul emmett is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Limehouse View Post
Of course, I agree, there has to be some sense of proportion and logic when debating what can be interpreted (although, as some people can see a lobster and others the act of murder, it just goes to show what the human eye and mind really can trick one into thinking) but in no way can anything 'seen' in a Sickert painting be held up as proof that he was the murderer.

What do I make of the alternative title? Well, the lady in the forefront of the picture looks to be well-dressed and there is, to me, a triumphant glint in her eye.

The spread legs you can see in the reflection, drevealed themselves to me on closer inspection. Between those legs seems to be a person.

Perhaps the title refers to something witnessed by the triumphant 'Mrs Barrett'. Perhaps she (or whoever she really represents) witnessed an infidelity that resulted in blackmail. It may well refer to a famous blackmail case of the time.

It is interesting that the 'Mrs Barrett' looks nothing like the lady in the "Red Blouse' painting.
I agree. I also agree with your point that the sketch of MJK must have been done by the person on the website; I never saw it before. And, as my original disclaimer noted, I too am not a Sickert proponent, but there still is something curious here.
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