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Jack B. Yeats (1871-1957)- An Island Funeral

An Island Funeral

Jack B. Yeats (1871 – 1957)

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

  • Artist
    Jack B. Yeats
  • Title
    An Island Funeral
  • Date
    1923
  • Dimensions
    91.5 × 61cm
  • Medium
    Oil on canvas
  • Collection
    Niland Collection
  • Provenance
    Purchased by public subscription from the Capuchin Annual in 1962
Description

This sharply observed painting depicts a coffin being brought from the remote Blasket Islands, off the West Kerry coast, to the mainland for burial in the graveyard at Ventry. There was no graveyard on the islands. The coffin is accompanied by a subdued group of mourners, including women wearing traditional black shawls. They contrast with their younger female companions who are instead attired in fashionable modern dress. On the left hand side of the composition another boat can be seen coming alongside. Its crew, who look towards the funeral boat, add to the strong sense of community evoked by the painting. The work emphasises the importance of ritual and custom in the lives of remote communities in Ireland in a period of political turbulence. As in other works of this period Yeats sets traditional practices against the increasing modernity of Irish life. The image of the boat carrying a coffin across the water has a classical connotation in that it recalls the story of Charon ferrying the souls of the dead across the river Styx to Hades.

Written by Roisin Kennedy

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  1. John B. Yeats (1839-1922) Portrait of Susan Mary (Lily) Yeats
  2. Jack B. Yeats (1871 - 1957) - Communicating with Prisoners
  3. John B. Yeats (1839-1922) - Portrait of Jennie Mitchell
  4. Jack B. Yeats (1871-1957)-Red Hanrahan’s Vision
  5. Henri Fantin-Latour (1836-1904) - Wood Nymph
  6. Marie Foley (b. 1959) - Portrait
  7. Louis le Brocquy - The Táin - Cúchulainn mounting into his chariot
  8. Jack B. Yeats (1871-1957)- Johnny Paterson singing ’Bridget Donoghue’
  9. Jack B. Yeats (1871-1957)-A Western Town, Night
  10. Marie Foley (b. 1959) - The Great Breath
  11. Percy French (1854 - 1920) - A view of Sligo Quay
  12. Jack B. Yeats (1871-1957)- Mountain window
  13. Norah McGuinness - Tide Receding, Dublin Bay
  14. Rita Duffy (b.1959) - Belfast Pieta
  15. Jack B. Yeats (1871-1957)- The Metal Man
  16. Jack B. Yeats (1871 - 1957) - The Stargazer
  17. Jack B. Yeats (1871-1957)-Singing “The beautiful Picture“
  18. Jack B. Yeats (1871-1957)- Simon the Cyrenian
  19. Louis le Brocquy - Hell Fire Club from Tibradden
  20. Constance Gore-Booth (1868 - 1927) - Untitled (Holloway Jail)
  21. Jack B. Yeats (1871 - 1957) - The Toy Theatre
  22. John B. Yeats (1839-1922) - Portrait of Susan Mitchell
  23. Jack B. Yeats (1871-1957)- A Political Meeting (in the West Of Ireland)
  24. Constance Gore-Booth (1868-1927) - Untitled