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.
A luscious supper prepared by Anthony Sargeant.
Tony made this mixture of vegetables and squid with baby octopus for supper – unctuous base with highlights of vegetables and fishy tastes.
Simple, inexpensive and delicious. Anthony Sargeant cooked this for supper – no need for masses of ‘chefy’ accompanying bits and pieces – keep it simple at home and enjoy.
JB Clark shown above in a detail from a portrait etching was a collaborator of the Scottish artist and etcher William Strang RA. The powerful portrait etching in in the collection of Anthony J Sargeant.
Born in 1859 Strang became a Royal Academician in 1921 the year he died.
He enrolled at the Slade School of Art in London in 1876, aged seventeen, and studied under the school’s newly-appointed professor, the French Realist Alphonse Legros (1837–1911). Legros had introduced a continental style of teaching which focused on the importance of fine draughtsmanship and drawing from life. Having been a leading member of the etching revival in France, Legros also introduced an etching class. Strang clearly excelled here, and served as Assistant Master in the etching class for two years after graduating. Legros’s teaching, and his ideas, had a profound and lasting influence on the young artist, who described his old master as ‘the greatest teacher that ever lived, because he was the greatest artist who ever taught’.
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.
Much better illustration will be in Bonhams catalogue – the subject is Mary O’Brien who married Charles Perceval a descendant of Spencer Perceval – the only British Prime Minister to be assassinated. Initialled GFW and dated 1850
Lunch prepared by Anthony Sargeant on 16th April 2017. Squid pieces on green salad with homemade wild garlic pesto, black olive tapenade, greenolive tapenade and spicy pepper luteniza on toast quarters. The wild garlic for the pesto gathered by Tony from the quiet wooded lanes around his Shropshire home