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Jack B. Yeats (1871 - 1957) - The Toy Theatre

The Toy Theatre

Jack B. Yeats (1871 – 1957)

© Estate of Jack B Yeats. All Rights Reserved, DACS 2013

  • Artist
    Jack B. Yeats
  • Title
    The Toy Theatre
  • Date
    c. 1910
  • Dimensions
    27 × 37.5cm
  • Medium
    Watercolour
  • Collection
    Niland Collection
  • Provenance
    Purchased by Sligo County Library and Museum from Dawson Gallery, 1964
Description

A young boy in an old fashioned costume is playing with a cut-out theatre. His youth is accentuated by his having to stand on a stool to reach up to the table. The theatre is like the ones that Jack Yeats designed and made in the early 1900s to entertain the local children in Devon where he was living at the time. A number of these plays were published and they feature similar stories of pirates and hidden treasure as seen in the one in this painting. Yeats had an abiding passion for the theatre especially for melodrama.

Behind the boy, through the window, can be seen a large house and beyond it a ship at anchor. This setting has been identified as Sligo where Yeats would have spent many hours as a child playing in this solitary fashion with his mind full of the sea and nautical adventures. His grandfather, William Pollexfen, ran a shipping business in the town and Yeats seems in this painting to deliberately juxtapose the imagination of the child with the reality of the adult world beyond the playroom window.

Written by Roisin Kennedy

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  1. atrick Hall - Jesus Walking on the Sea
  2. Jack B. Yeats (1871-1957)- The Strand Races, West Of Ireland
  3. Sean McSweeney - The Road
  4. Jack B. Yeats (1871 - 1957) - Communicating with Prisoners
  5. Jack B. Yeats (1871-1957)-Red Hanrahan’s Vision
  6. Artist Unknown - Portrait of a Girl
  7. Jack B. Yeats (1871-1957)- The Sea and the Lighthouse
  8. Jack B. Yeats (1871-1957)- Cartoon for Figure of Christ
  9. Nick Miller - John McGahern
  10. Jack B. Yeats (1871-1957)- Leaving the Far Point
  11. John B. Yeats (1839-1922) - Self Portrait
  12. John B. Yeats (1839-1922) - Portrait of John O’Leary
  13. Norah McGuinness (1903 - 1980) - Hanrahan’s Vision (Illustrations for The Stories of Red Hanrahan)
  14. Jack B. Yeats (1871-1957)-A Western Town, Night
  15. Sean Keating PRHA (1889 - 1979) - William and Mary
  16. Louis le Brocquy - The Táin - Lion
  17. Jack B. Yeats (1871-1957) - An Island Man
  18. Sean Keating PRHA (1889 - 1979) - Turf-Gatherer
  19. George William Russell (AE) (1867-1935) - Portrait of Mary Colum
  20. James McNeill Whistler (1834-1903) - Maunder’s Fishshop, Chelsea
  21. Henri Fantin-Latour (1836-1904) - Wood Nymph
  22. John B. Yeats (1839-1922) - Portrait of Susan Mitchell
  23. Patrick Scott (b. 1921) - Bog Sun (16)
  24. Jack B. Yeats (1871-1957)- Market Day