barber institute of fine arts
university of birmingham


John Leech (1817-1864)

Mr Briggs contemplates a day’s fishing

Coloured etching

240 x 299 mm

 

Fishing was seen as a means of escaping urban congestion, offering the working man relaxation. Mr Briggs’s front-room construction of this contemplative sport is rather more frenetic, as his line knocks candlesticks, picture frames and vases from the mantel piece. Briggs’s shocked wife and children look on at his frenzy, as a painting of a fish smiles mockingly down at him. Leech saw himself as a family man, and built up a repertoire for the day-to-day with of the Victorian home.

Purchased 1944 (No.44.8)

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