23 MAY 1840, Page 18


Jolts 1.r.wis's large picture, that was to have enriched the Weter-eo- lour Exhibition, leis safely arrived at last ; and we have been gratified by a sight of it at Mr. GRIFFITH'S in Waterloo Place, the present ens- todier. Mr. Inewis, it seems, had sent the picture by private It id, to insure a safe and onnetual trausmission to England - but the very care taken caused the delay : the steam-boat agents at Atrseilles would not suffer it to pass as baggage, even if paid for la addition to the passenger's fare, and insisted on its going back, to return again as a distinct article of freight. The picture is of unusually large dimensions for water-coloure ; and represents the scene before St. Peter's at Rome \Own tbe Pope gives his benediction on Easter Sunday. The motley midi ittele or pilgrims, priests, and peasants, of all ages and sexes, and in every variety .tr holy- day costume, are scattered over the area and on the steps of the church— like a bed or tulips for the mixtare of bright colours--in all sorts of at- titudes, but mostly kneeling, waiting the appearance of the Pope at the draped and canopied halcody above the grand entrance. The principal group near the eye oucupice the entire foreground of a loog drawing, and is composed of a number or figures, whose characters as well as their forms, costunnts, and attiend.s. are evidently studied Into the life—notwithstanding. the artist's favourite physiognomies are every- where visible. An air of' indolence and passive enjoyment pervades the throng ; only here and there are seen sonic looking, but not very impatiently, for the advent of the Holy Father ; while others are sleep- ing, chatting, or making love: the sinister look of the monks and pil- grims contrasts with the ingenuous countenances of the peasants, bronzed with the sun. The drawing is admirable throughout : the forms are solid and round, the limbs appear to have life and motion ; and the repose and ease of the postures are perfect. The infinitude of gay hues is blended very skilfully ; though there is but little shadow, the sun being almost vertical, and the blue sky nearly cloudless : the astonishing power of colour and tone in the principal group bears down the lightet tints, making them subserve to the heightening of its rich and deep harmonies. In point of finish, the picture is as highly wrought as possilple: it is entirely painted with body colours, except the sky. This is unquestionably the chtf-tAcurre of Lcwis; and we may perhaps add, that it is the finest water-colour picture the mo- dern school has produced. It would have been the lodestar of the Ex- hibition had it arrived in tune : as it is, we do not know how the publie curiosity to see it will be gratified ; Mr. (.3 111IF1ITII'S politeness will, we suspect, be rather severely taxed by the number of private visitcrs.