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Packing Cherries in Provence

Henry Herbert La Thangue
circa 1923

La Thangue was born in Croydon, Surrey, and was schooled at Dulwich College where he met fellow painters Stanhope Forbes and Frederick Goodall. He studied painting at the Lambeth School of Art and at the Royal Academy, London, winning a gold medal for his work in 1879. This led to a prestigious scholarship for 3 years at the studio of Jean-Léon Gérôme at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Paris.

In the following years La Thangue’s work showed a growing interest in French Impressionism. He travelled to Provence and Liguria, and scenes from these travels gradually infiltrated his work as he increasingly regretted the decline of village life in England.

Just before the outbreak of World War I he staged a one-man exhibition at the Leicester Galleries, where he showed a wide selection of landscapes from southern Europe.

After the war, La Thangue returned to Liguria, and during the 1920s his entire production was given over to scenes of orange groves and gardens. He died in a state of depression at the news that some of his paintings had been destroyed in a shipwreck off the coast of New Zealand.