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Highlights from the Rutherford Collection

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NORTHERN SATURDAY
Harry Rutherford
1948

Northern Saturday by Harry Rutherford

Here is a depiction of a bustling market scene.

Harry Rutherford paints a busy Saturday market scene in Hyde. In the distance are mills and locally recognisable shop fronts and buildings. Under the stalls’ awnings locals are doing their weekend shopping. Children ride the bright merry-go-round. Three men leaning against the coffee stall are chatting casually with their hands in their pockets. Women drag their small children across the market place out of the cold.

The figures are so demonstrative, adding to the ambience and spontaneity of the work. There is something happening in every part of the painting, and this gives the work its vibrancy.

The painting depicts Hyde as it looked just after the Second World War. The painting is held in high regard by people in Tameside as it shows their market in Hyde in all its glory and vibrancy.

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MILL GIRLS, ASHTON
Harry Rutherford
1948

Mill Girls

This is a painting by Harry Rutherford, an important local artist with a national reputation.

It represents local landmarks whilst also celebrating local industry and its people.
This painting was the cover of ‘John Bull’ magazine in 1948. Here four mill girls climb the steps on Park Parade in Ashton-under-Lyne. In the background loom the Old Wharf and Albion Mills.

The cheery faces of the girls all belong to local beauty Bewley Fletcher. Her face has the classic features of the post-war era. Her hair and clothes distinctly date the work and made it an ideal contemporary magazine cover.

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Barbirolli conducting the Halle Orchestra
Harry Rutherford
Circa 1945

Barbirolli conducting the Halle Orchestra

This painting by Harry Rutherford shows the conductor, Sir John Barbirolli, rehearsing with the Halle Orchestra.

Rutherford’s choice of perspective allows the viewer to see the conductor from the musician’s point of view. Barbirolli, who had only recently been appointed, is bathed in the centre light. We can see the concentration on his face and his outstretched hand slightly blurred by movement.

The electric lighting shown in this work casts shadows onto the musicians and the room seems cramped.

Sir John Barbirolli stayed with the Hallé Orchestra until his death in 1970. The Orchestra was formed in 1857 and is the oldest professional orchestra in the United Kingdom. They are now based at Bridgewater Hall in Manchester.

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