Sacramento, United States

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This work is a digital rework from a dover clipart of one of Margaret Winifred Tarrant’s works.

One of the few succesful Female Artists of her time who helped pave the way for other women of the arts….

This work is inspired by her work on
Carroll, Lewis, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, London, Ward, Lock, 1916

My modern day feel for what it would be like as Alice just before her fall down the rabbit hole!

Margaret Winifred Tarrant

Tarrant was born in Battersea, a suburb of south London in 1888. She was the only child of Percy Tarrant, the landscape painter, and his wife, Sarah Wyatt. Percy was a successful illustrator of magazines as well as books and greeting cards. His work was very influential in her life and he her encouraged her to take up illustration. As a child, Tarrant would set up an ‘Exhibition Tent’ with sheets, pin up her art work and invite her parents inside for viewing.

Tarrant began to work for publishers of Christmas cards at the age of eighteen and became a book illustrator at the age of twenty with the publication of Kingsley’s The Water Babies in 1908. The next year, she produced a series of paintings for postcards, published by C.W. Faulkner. She worked for many publishers, working almost exclusively with the Medici Society in her later years. For them, she collaborated with Marion St John Webb on a popular series of Flower Fairy books in the 1920’s.

Tarrant’s work also became enormously popular for use on postcards, calendars, greeting cards and prints, many published by the Medici Society. Her best-known painting, ‘The Piper of Dreams’ was reproduced and sold by the thousands.

Around 1930, Tarrant’s parents were ill and needed her constant care. Her father’s deteriorated so badly that he need Tarrant to finish off the details of his paintings. Both of her parents died in 1934 within months of each other.

During the 1920’s and 30’s, her religious paintings became very fashionable, the best-known being ‘He Prayeth Best’, depicting a shepherd boy kneeling on a hilltop. In an effort to collect material for her work, the Medici Society sent her on a trip to Palestine in 1936. After the death of her parents, this was exactly what Tarrant needed. She was inspired and thrilled by what she saw there and enjoyed sketching and painting the landscape and its people.

During the Second World War, she contributed a few paintings to the war effort. In an attempt to save on petrol, Tarrant could be seen riding around the village on an old bike. One day, she saw a neighbor’s child drawing on two shed doors, apparently due to the wartime paper shortage. She immediately hopped off her bicycle and joined in, covering the doors with a display of assorted animals and faeries, not forgetting to add a portrait of the child into the mix.

She has exhibited at the Royal Academy and the Royal Society of Artists in Birmingham. By 1953, her health and eyesight was deteriorating. Within a few years, she gave up her house in Peaslake to live with her friend Molly Brett in Cornwall. She died on 28 July 1959. She left her pictures to her friends and her estate to twelve charities.


Artwork Comments

  • Nancy Stafford
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desktop tablet-landscape content-width tablet-portrait workstream-4-across phone-landscape phone-portrait
desktop tablet-landscape content-width tablet-portrait workstream-4-across phone-landscape phone-portrait

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