Thursday, May 02, 2013

Quick 1890s Quiz: Sidney Sime

A quick Eighteen-Nineties quiz for you... We are after the name of an artist.

He was described by Frank Harris thus:

"A strongly built man of about five feet seven or eight with a cliff-like, overhanging, tyrannous forehead. His eyes are superlative, greyish blue looking our under heavy brows, eyes with a pathetic patience in them as of one who had lived with sorrow; and realises - "The weary weight of all the unintelligible world." From time to time humorous gleams light up the eyes and the whole face; mirth on melancholy - a modern combination."

And in a reasonably recent biographical monograph we are told:

"He started as a pit-boy, became a celebrity in the Nineties, collaborated with and became a close friend of two talented noblemen, and died poor and forgotten"

Suggest your answers in the comments if you feel so inclined... until tomorrow when this post will be updated with an image of the Max Beerbohm caricature of our subject...

UPDATE: Well, this is 'tomorrow' and as promised, at the top of the post now is Max Beerbohm's caricature of Sydney Sime, (well done to both EJC and Anonymous in the comments below for being so epic in their knowledge of the Eighteen-Nineties illustration scene - there's no prize but then, you don't need one when you're as cool as you both are!). Personally, the caricature seems cruel, even by Max's standards, but you can judge for yourselves by comparison with this much more flattering image of Sime, a photographic portrait by that great underrated photographer of the early 20th Century, Emil Otto Hoppé. The more of Sime's work I peruse, the more I wonder if he wasn't rather fond of the grotesque self-portrait and may even have revelled in Max's cruelty. Hoppé appears to have captured Sime in front of a a piece of his own work which looks rather like an exaggerated self-portrait/caricature and there seems to be round, beady-eyed, mustachioed faces like that all the way through his work...


Anonymous said...

I s'pose that would be S.H. Sime

Anonymous said...

I agree with the first commenter about Sidney Sime, even though I only know about his working relationship with Lord Dunsany. Sime's work for him is worth a visit to Dunsany Castle.

Anonymous said...

Based upon the Hoppé photograph, Sime should be played by Philip Seymour Hoffman when the blockbuster film about Lord Dunsany is made...Ha!

Spero Meliora


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