Weekly photo challenge: Masterpiece


I have a framed print of the above painting by John Longstaff (1862-1941). Titled ‘Breaking the News’, it was painted in 1887. I was delighted to find a Public Domain copy of it online. The painting is located in the Art Gallery of Western Australia.

It is a sad painting. When I first saw it I could really identify with the woman holding the child. It was in the mid 1980’s and my marriage had just broken up and I was looking after my three young sons on my own. I was instantly connected with the anguish on the lady’s face. In this case we can just see the men outside the door carrying the body of her husband. I have always assumed that he was killed working in a mine or a similar situation. Her world is about to collapse around her with the news she is about to receive. It captures a moment in time.

Today when I look at the painting I also remember my grandmother’s home as it was so similar to the one in the painting. It has a very homely feel about it. To me, it is a masterpiece!



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